Time to get under the blanket and listen closely to this eerie tale. Yesterday, the Topshop crew headed to the preview of Stoker to witness our latest girl crush Mia Wasikowska in her most striking performance so far. Mix up the Victorian Jane Eyre with the poker-faced Wednesday Addams and what you get is the 18-year-old protagonist India Stoker who forces her smiles and has no fear in stepping down the creepiest basement at midnight to get a scoop of vanilla ice cream from the freezer.
“Just as a flower doesn’t choose its colour, we don’t choose what we are going to be.” this ominous phrase is how “Stoker” kicks off and a sense of forboding continues right to the end. After the mysterious death of her father India’s world is turned upside down when her unsettling Uncle Charlie shows up. We don’t want to give anything away but Charlie and India team up for an unsettling series of events that we weren’t expecting.
Directed by Chan-wook Park – of the legendary Old Boy – Stoker is a psycho thriller of the best Hitchcockian manner that spreads maximum possible tension with a small group of characters in a limited space. There were plenty of scenes in which we had to dig our nails into the arm of our chairs! In essence it’s beautiful to watch with heightened scenery and brilliant, colorful compositions that counteract the heavy helping of macabre. So, if you’re looking for something unexpected at the cinema, it’s got to be Stoker!
Let us know which bit makes you jump right out of your seat!
All the backstage news and beauty updates from the three brilliant designers at Fashion East. Watch the show again, here.
Ryan Lo AW13
Longtime Topshop favourite Ryan Lo was out in force this season for his debut catwalk collection. Bigger than ever Lo split his collection into three defining looks: working girl, pyjama girl and fantasy girl inspired respectively by Margaret Thatcher, Bridget Jones and Sailor Moon. It wasn’t just the clothes taking this triple thread into effect but hair, beauty and accessory all kept it tri-tastic.
Shadows That Shine
Make-up artist Ayami Nishimura took on the idea of a shadow – transforming the first models to hit the catwalk in just a touch of shadow, day time style, the second section into a slightly darker shadow and the final with their half a face covered. But this isn’t shadowing as you know it and instead took the form of a gentle white glitter under the eyes and along the contours.
See Through Accessories
The talented Lara Jensen was behind the amazing acrylic works of art that coordinated with Lo’s collection. Hard plastic clutches for the Thatcher inspired look, snake-like hair pieces that resembles Bridget Jones’ hair – you know, when she goes to that wedding party and it’s a bit mad- and finally a dog clutch filled with glittered straight from the Sailor Moon cartoon.
Colour Us Crazy
If it wasn’t enough that the clothes were an explosion of bubble gum pink and purples, the hair team created wash-in-wash-off dip dye looks in an array of lightly tinged rainbow hues. If there’s one thing about Ryan Lo it’s the absolute dedication to his look.
On The Catwalk
Front row… Nick Grimshaw and Pixie Geldof were the London scensters celebrating the whole of Fashion East. Louise Gray snuggled up with Cassette Playa and our very own Kate Phelan watched over.
The collection in 5 words… Fantasy dressing – day to night.
The girls on the catwalk… New faces, all young, perky and long limbed.
Playlist… Music mixed from the illustrious Jerry Bouthier. We were tapping our toes.
What we loved… Ryan’s pink fluffy day wear and baby blue overcoat covered in short feathers. His die-hard love of tulle!
Hero piece… The acrylic boxy clutch full of glitter made by Lara Jensen for Ryan Lo. One of Lady Gaga’s favourite artists!
Inspired by… The inspiration was threefold: Margaret Thatcher; Bridget Jones; Sailor Moon. Yeah, we were blown away by those references too!
End notes… Whether it be his pussy bow blouses, robe coats or polka dot lame, Ryan Lo, has got saccarine sweet dressing down to a tee and we can’t stop falling for the taste.
Claire Barrow AW13
The leather loving Stockton-on-Tees designer, Claire Barrow was back for a catwalk collection with some intriguing new accessories!
We came across a collection of hand-painted leather pieces on tables including lamp shades covered in blackened paper, painted twigs and eerie dolls that would decorate the models as they powered down the catwalk.
Minimal Make-Up and Hair Stories
The Toni and Guy team were wielding their magic on the models’ locks and transforming them into shaggy tousled vision that teamed perfect with the disheveled and distressed styling of the models.
On The Catwalk
The collection in 5 words… Punk philosophy goes gothic.
The girls on the catwalk… Girls who rocked a certain ‘other wordly vibe’ and a couple of tall and suitably awkward boys joined in on the game too.
Playlist… Loud, loud, loud! It’s punk after all, right? Curated by editor of the Beat and Features Editor at i-D, Hanna Hanra.
Hero piece… A lampshade as a hat. Ok, we jest, we’ll take the giant fish shaped clutch that seemed to flap around of it’s own accord or the dramatic floor length leather gown. It’s the coolest take on bridal we’ve yet to see!
Inspired by… The mundane. Exploring how blandness can actually be rather thrilling and creating her very own downbeat tribe.
End notes… When we’re feeling a little mischievous we like to think of ourselves as a Claire Barrow girl. Approach with caution!
The girl whose collections always get us beaming debuted her Fashion East sponsored line this season with great fanfare.
Make-up was simple and girlie to co-ordinate with the ’50s style looks that seemed perfect for a date. A sparse base was met with a slick black flick of liquid liner right up the models eyes.
Teddy Girls and Boys
Nope, this wasn’t ’60s inspired but it did involve some cuddly toys. Backstage the models cosied up with their teddy of choice and used them as cute little bags. Our eyes were on the lime green teddy that went perfectly with Lulu Kennedy’s Simone Rocha ensemble.
There’ s been controversy brewing about the age of models these days but the presence of a seven year-old cutie hanging around backstage before her catwalk debut made for lots of coo-ing amidst the three designers and their teams.
The collection in 5 words… A foxy fifties date night.
Playlist… Radio One DJ and sat front row Nick Grimshaw was behind the tunes for Happy Ashley’s playlist that included a heavy helping of Elvis.
What we loved… The sheer off-white two-pieces and dresses printed with fifties style iconography – lipsticks, bubble writing – and teddy bear faux-fur jackets in pale blue.
Hero piece… The cute black crop tee shirt emblazoned with a giant heart and the slogan, “My heart belongs to Elvis Presley.” We’ll take two!
Inspired by… Complete Americana obsession dedicated to teen idols and slumber parties. Williams also hinted to Riots Girls, ’60s fan-mania and DIY.
End notes… True love! We really fell hard for Ashley Williams’ AW13 collection and have very high hopes for this talented young lady. We think everyone’s style needs a little injection of fun and whether it be her customised converse or teddy bar side bags, it’s cute to boot.
Re-watch the Topshop Unique AW13 show from Topshop.com, check out our live coverage of London Fashion Week over on our Twitter and keep coming back to Inside-Out for more news from Unique as well as all the NEWGEN talent showing at the Topshop Showspace!
What do you need to keep up with the future of fashion retail? Innovative ideas. And where else would you find a bigger bunch of creative minds, than in the Royal College of Art (RCA). For the Boutique and Unique space at our Oxford Circus Flagship store, we asked Interior Design students from the RCA to compete for the chance to give it a brand new makeover.
The winning design was by Rob Vinall – who is studying his MA in Interior Design – and was unveiled in-store in time for London Fashion Week and shines with ingenious concept. “The initial concept was an idea of cause and effect, giving importance to the elements of hanging and balance,” explained Vinall. His vision features a triangular ceiling grid from which products can be suspended, and which can be altered periodically to create different moods. We’re more then impressed!
We spoke with Vinall about the project, the clothes and his favourite designers.
What was the brief given to you for the project?
The brief was to come up with an expandable, flexible and energetic interior retail space which had to be able to entice the customer toward the Boutique and Unique section of the store. The brief was split into four phases, each of which focused on separate elements of the space as a whole. We all knew from the start that it was a live project so it was an exciting short project to work on but we weren’t told who the client was until the latter stages. Not knowing the client or the exact space until the later stages meant there was an element of detachment and we could really explore our ideas without constraint.
What was your inspiration behind the space?
I wanted to make the store feel less crowded, to give the Boutique a bit of breathing space and somewhere special to shop and browse. Everything in the store is almost immediately at eye level, especially the clothing. I wanted to have something above to entice you to that corner of the store. I became interested by the notion of balance and tried to simplify all the elements within the concept. The triangular forms came from an exploration into simplifying the geometry – which then evolved into a grid structure that invaded the space. The clothing and hanging elements are all hung and supported by the undulating triangular structure above. The colour of the triangles and gradient on the walls can be changed according to collections and campaigns to Topshop’s needs.
Did you use any specific reference?
There is a dance studio by Tsutsumi and Associates, and that has a really beautiful gradient fade on the mirror treatment which illudes to a top heavy kind of dream like space. I also like a bench designed by h220430 that looks like its weightless and floating. I think there’s definitely some Brutalist influences in the simple geometry of the ceiling design as well.
Which designers or architects do you most admire?
Francis Alys, Mitch Epstein, Carmody Groarke, Gordon Matta Clark, Troika, Max Lamb, Ken Adam, Erno Goldfinger, 6a.
What’s your favourite space in London?
I love the Barbican, both internally and externally. I have a passion for post war architecture and the interior is a beautiful example of Brutalist post-war concrete construction. I also love the interior of the Commercial Tavern in Spitalfields when drinking.
Head down to our flagship store Topshop Oxford Circus in London to see the new Boutique and Unique space for yourselves.
New York Fashion Week has wound down its run and after a week of fashion highs and temperature lows it’s ready to pass the baton on to London. But before we move into the spotlight, here are a few of our highlights from the week that was.
Going back to their roots this season, Rodarte’s Mulleavy sisters took inspiration from early 80s Santa Cruz, California – the sleepy surfer town they grew up in. Picture dramatic tie-dyed floor-sweeping gowns, crystal studded knit sweater-and-skirt combos, and tough leather biker jackets lending a punk-rocker edge. Majorly cool model Chloe Nørgaard turned heads with striking neon hair she’d dip-dyed herself pre-show to match her outfit – LOVE!
It was a rockin’ 60s mod versus 90s grunge vibe at the Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony AW13 presentation, where super-cool dolly-bird models – including Sevigny herself – embraced an atmosphere of youth and anarchy. The collection looked like it had come straight out of Sevigny’s own enviable wardrobe: bold 60s designs including A-line skirts and swing coats, mohair sweaters, gingham and lace baby-doll dresses and PVC skirts and jackets were top of our wish-list.
Band of Outsiders
Band of Outsiders took a bold change of direction this season with 40s-inspired cuts and a bold black and white palette for AW13. Continuing the major monochrome trend this NYFW, designer Scott Sternberg explored 40s style tea-dresses and tailoring, and some 80s-inspired pieces including oversize sweaters and slouchy shift dresses with shawl necklines – something Sternberg attributes to being “a kid of the 80s”.
Alexander Wang’s always on-point downtown-cool aesthetic was in full effect for AW13 as awesome leather and wool looks in charcoal, black and navy took to the runway. Models, including Liberty Ross, with slicked back hair and popping orange pony tails stepped out to the theme tune of ‘Rocky 3’ in sporty-chic separates and outerwear that played on a boxing theme. Wang sent out menacing hoods and killer fur boxing gloves – a chic-tough vision that only Wang, the undisputed downtown NYC fashion star, could deliver.
It was back to the future at Theyskens Theory with a collection of super-cool future-60s looks for AW13. The effortlessly-cool designer experimented with volume and proportion this season to create updated-mod wear – quite a change from last season’s high-end grunge. Standout pieces for winter were spacey, trapeze mini-dresses and jackets in quilted fabric, amazing knee-high boots, swing skirts and loose-fitting shorts - overall it was a collection of wardrobe favourites for every fashion-loving girl to wear anywhere. Yes please!
Inside a sprawling warehouse space in Chelsea, Phillip Lim sent out his covetable collection for next season – a too-cool-for-school range of multi-layered, multi-hued separates and outerwear. With a Japanese biker theme, Lim’s collection referenced traditional biker styles including leather jackets, vests and racer-back dresses, reworked in the pretty-tough urban style he’s made his own. The stars of the show were the amazing outerwear pieces – from tailored jackets to overcoats and cropped pea coats, all were experimental and striking, yet eminently wearable.
With a front row consisting of 60s-style it-girls including Tennessee Thomas and Sarah Sophie Flicker, Karen Walker’s supercute 60s-meets-90s Fall/Winter 13 collection of pretty pieces went off with a bang. Karen Walker is for the anti-fashion girl who embraces a magpie mix of vintage, high-street and designer, and this is what Walker served up in droves this season. Spring-like floral skirts and dresses were paired with chunky knit beanies and biker jackets for a grungy rock’n’roll vibe that was perfectly topped off by bug and cat-eye shades for which the designer is famous.
Extreme Femininity was the title of Jason Wu’s Autumn offering, and it was an homage to the confident womanliness of his latest muses; the slinky Stephanie Seymour, who sat front row, and Michelle Obama who has made Wu her number one man for all her inauguration needs. Power-waists, diaphanous pleats, vampish scarlet cocktail dresses and pretty polka dots for good measure made for a collection that belongs out on the town on the backs of society princesses.
To catch up on all the London Fashion Week news head back to Insideout.Topshop.com for show reports, backstage news and more.
London’s terrible twosome Edward Meadham and Benjamin Kirchhoff of Meadham Kirchhoff fame (who love nothing more than watching The Great British Bake Off and swooning over Miu Miu shoes), are known for their extravagant and ornate collections as well as their epic stage productions. Over the last few years, they’ve gained a cult-like following and have become THE must-see show at London Fashion Week. Judging from the rush backstage after their show, their continued quest for “perfection” was well and truly realised for AW13!
Tears In Her Eyes
The gorgeous Florrie White embraced Meadham Kirchoff’s quintessentially decadent aesthetic and created a look that was “not girly, but very romantic.” The make-up look evolved on the catwalk with the first girls coming out with colder skin, “a raw and dreamlike effect,” said White, “that also gives the impression that they might have been crying.” Eventually the looks transformed into a stronger and more contoured feel. “As the show goes on,” said White whilst still putting the finishing touches to the girls, “we want it to seem like they’re finally making more of an effort, maybe they’re about to meet someone so they’ve got a red lip.” Similarly, the girls’ hair started tightly wound in 1940’s finger curls that were first seen under intricate veils and then topped with extravagant sparkling tiaras and diamante hair combs as the show went on.
Come To Bed Red
Katie Jane Hughes was back with Butter to produce a sleek nail look to juxtapose with the grand-looking clothes. This season it was all about the seductively named “Come to Bed” red. “It’s classic and timeless but it’s a chic and strong colour that gives off a hint of timeless elegance,” said Hughes, “we were of course inspired by the vintage feel of the clothes too and there’s nothing more vintage than red nails!”
On the Catwalk
Front row… Everyone from our uptown New York style crush Taylor Tomasi-Hill to the ever-wacky London DJ Princess Julia.
The collection in five words… Aprons, Victoriana, sailor, rubber, frills!
The girls on the catwalk… Girls were cast from the street – one of them was an ELLE intern! Continuing on the idea of inclusivity, backstage after the show Edward mentioned how he’d have loved if all the kids at The Tate could have come in for the show too!
Playlist… twinkling classical music – waltzes that Anna Karenina might have danced to and fairytale orchestral pieces that made our hearts ache.
What we loved… Everything – it was such an intricate, beautiful collection! The sailor girls, French maids, the Victorian-esque necklines mixed up with subversive rubber frills and the Marie-Antoinette-style shoes.
Hero piece… A beautiful ballerina print trapeze dress with laser-cut rubber detail that was red-carpet worthy. Meadham Kirchoff is always a treat for the senses and this was no exception.
Inspired by… Edward Meadham had been staying home a lot, cooking and keeping house, and had a new found respect for the home maker – from the Victorian woman wearing frills and nipped waists to the more modern woman who’s always in and out of her apron to keep herself looking spic and span (a rubber one in this case!).
End notes… It was hopelessly romantic and melancholic – the music, the wide open ‘stage’, the stark palette and the very feminine references all together made for something beautifully poignant that will stay with us long after Fashion Week is over.
Re-live the entire show over on our YouTube channel check out our live coverage of London Fashion Week over on our Twitter and keep coming back to Inside-Out for more news from Unique as well as all the NEWGEN talent showing at the Topshop Showspace!