Who better than Kate Bosworth – the style Queen of the chic Palm Spring’s festival Coachella – to star in our summer campaign film dedicated to the season of festivals? Kate brought her nonchalant and effortless style to our summer short filmed in California’s beautiful Mono Lake by director (and fiancée) Michael Polish.
Working her fashion magic, Kate worked with our in house design team on our Festival Edit which she wears so well in the film and are now set to be firm festival favourites with girls around the world for the summer ahead. (Don’t forget to check the full shoppable version of the film over on Topshop.com!)
We chatted with Kate to find out music influences, and her essential festival kit.
How was it working with your fiancée Michael?
I adore working with Michael. I am such a fan of his work, of his artistic process. His mind fascinates me and I learn from him daily. We live an incredibly harmonious artistic life. For this particular project, I worked with the Topshop design team on the festival pieces from concept to final product. Michael then creates the vision for the campaign based off the look and feel of the pieces.
What was it like filming in Mono Lake?
I had never experienced Mono Lake before. Shooting in Mono Lake was like traveling through time. The entire place is desolate, serene, with large crystallized salt stalagmites jutting from the earth. We traveled in a little crew on a large bus over a three day shoot. It was a true American road trip, crossing huge expanses of land every day.
How did the collection with Topshop come about?
I have worn Topshop for years. The brand has their finger on the pulse of creating relevant fashion at an affordable price point. When the Topshop team and I worked together on the “Winter Wonderland” holiday project, it was an effortless fit all around. In the midst of that creative process, we all started to think about the next phase… How could we expand upon our collaborative relationship.
What inspired the collection?
The exterior expression is such an intuitive, emotional one. For the “Festival” collection, I channeled sunlight… freedom… joy… youth… rebellion. I’m attracted to a counterbalanced feminine / masculinity. To me, this is the most sexy. A faded cropped t-shirt with loose distressed boyfriend jeans, slung low and a plaid shirt tied round the waist. The choice of a suede material on the laser cut pieces was critical because it gave them a tougher edge, like the chaps on a girl in the Wild West.
Did you have any music references for the collection?
Neko Case is a huge influence in my life. Her song, “Favorite” plays to our film for this collection. I love country music, the best and most heartfelt stories are born within these melodies.
What does festival mean to you?
Music, freedom, sunlight, energy.
Can you talk us through some of your favourite pieces?
The dove grey suede laser cut separates I wore to Coachella. This design also comes in a burnt orange & in a mini dress version. To me, these pieces represent a modern take on western design. The laser cut out is inspired by a piece of Victorian lace I found with the design team in Portobello market. This feminine touch matched with the rawness of suede is a nice, balanced representation of my aesthetic.
The cream shearling vest (also worn to Coachella). I wanted to push the idea of Bohemia with this piece. It feels quite special, as if found in a market someplace far away.
Perfect denim shorts! It’s no secret I love denim… They are a staple in my wardrobe. I wanted to create the perfect denim short. Something a bit tomboyish, but quite sexy. Again, playing with the idea of feminine masculinity.
Boyfriend plaid shirt – oversized, soft, a mix of earthy colors with a hint of turquoise on the back panel. A nod to 90′s grunge. In fact, this shirt is very similar to one I wore back then.
What is Topshop for you?
The brand has their finger on the pulse of creating exciting, relevant fashion at an affordable price point.
What makes a festival for you?
This year, the highlight at Coachella was mad dancing with Michael to New Order.
What is in your essential festival kit?
Band aids, Chapstick, sunscreen, sunglasses..
What are your key wardrobe pieces at a festival?
Important to layer as most festivals are battling the elements!
What bands would play at your dream festival?
Dwight Yoakam, Neko case, The Cure, New Order, Other Lives
Kate at Coachella in April wearing pieces from our Festival Edit.
It seems like the whole world is waiting for the The Great Gatsby to hit the screens and we can’t decide if Baz Luhrmann’s re-making of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s brilliant novel or the fashion’s swing towards the ‘20s and the film’s costume design is exciting us more! Either way, we’re more than sure it’s going to be e a feast for the eyes and it’s a film that’s at the top of every Topshop girls must-see list.
Flicking through all the film footage we got enchanted by a diamond-clad Daisy Buchanan played by the natural beau Carey Mulligan. Our latest girl crush catches our breath with endless strings of pearls, the most delicate lace gowns and diamond head-pieces. Her boyish ash blonde bob makes us want to get a summer hair cut appointment now! And we swear our fashion-loving hearts just skipped a beat when we heard that Miuccia Prada created 40 looks for the film’s party scenes. It turns out the film’s costume designer, Catherine Martin, used existing Prada and Miu Miu looks for a screen test and the clothes looked so good in the spotlight that Martin couldn’t help but ask Mrs Prada for a slice of her magic. The dress worn by Daisy in the all-important scene where Daisy and Jay are re-united took its roots from Prada’s spring/summer 2012 chandelier dress and is just a pearl.
Taking place in New York City in the spring of 1922 Mulligan plays that frivolous married girl, who comes across the mysterious, party-giving millionaire Jay Gatsby for the second time around and falls helplessly in love all over again. Or at least she thinks she does! Set in an era of loosening morals, glittering jazz and sky-rocketing stocks, this movie is set to be a perfect example of how a classic story can be given a new lease of life with a high-octane tragedy bringing the ’20s to a new generation.
And for those who need to see the costume design perfection in real life, there’s an exhibition of selected Prada-Martin costumes on display from today till the 12th of May at the Prada New York Epicenter in New York City. The installation, entitled Catherine Martin and Miuccia Prada Dress Gatsby features clothes, accessories and jewellery as well as sketches, production stills, backstage footage and trailers from the film, the exhibition will travel to Tokyo in June and then to Shanghai in July. Now we just need to figure out how to get to one of those places!
Ladies and Gentlemen, J.W. Anderson is back in the building! The cult designer is bringing his kooky-cool and cultish aesthetic back to Topshop for a second triumphant season, and we can’t wait! This next collection is set to be more pared-back and edited than the last, with key pieces such as the knitted sweater and the loafer making a revamped return. Be prepared for lots of silver, lots of plaid and um.. lots of dodos.
We grabbed the frenetically busy designer for a few words before the collection launches.
How did you find the reaction from the first collection?
It was really unexpected and really exciting. It was a full commitment and an entire concept, which was amazing. It was sort of like a breaking point for us and it appealed to everyone which was good.
How did it make you feel knowing you had a second one to produce?
It was daunting to think that I had to outdo it. But this one is more stripped back; it’s more about reducing. The idea is about two sisters – two terrible sisters. There’s a lot more of a kink in it. It’s all about perversion and it’s a bit perverse in terms of feel. You know, playing with ugliness and taste levels and the British kink.
Where do the Dodos coming from?
For me they’re strong symbols – the idea of extinction is a powerful one. It’s like a full stop because this is our last collection with Topshop. But it’s also just a playful little doodle – like the kind of thing you come up with when you’re on the phone and doodling at the same time. It’s the same as how the bat came about – it’s subconscious.
How does your design process work from beginning to end?
For me, it’s an evolution process from beginning to end, right up to when we take the pictures. It’s like a collage; you gather all the different elements then you piece them together. We assemble all the different information, process it, sketch it, then hang it on the body, then go in search of new fabrics and new ideas to try and get a different take on things.
How was it working with Kate Phelan?
Kate’s amazing; she’s the sharpest person I know. I love her.
How is it balancing so many projects at once?
You have to take every day as it comes. It’s a lot of pressure but bit by bit, step by step you get there. I’m a workaholic – and it’s starting to show. I don’t really have any time off at the moment until April!
What girls would you like to see wearing this collection?
I think anyone really! A bit of a boyish girl. We have certain people who wear it like Alexa, but I love to see it on anyone at all. You don’t have to be famous, as long as you love it and you believe it, that’s it.
The shoot – what was the vibe behind it?
It was an idea of two characters in a family. Something that felt a little off-kilter and macabre, but young ultimately. It was inspired by a kind of subversive youth culture – the nose chains, the glares, that long never-ending hair cascading down.
Is there a favourite piece?
The argyle. Yes, they look really chic and they’re modern but also fun.
Any tips for young designers?
Never compromise and listen to yourself. And create a good team. Never be concerned about opinion at the time – and don’t be a slave to the internet! There’s a lot more things out there other than the internet!
As the star of our debut Christmas film, Winter Wonderland, we knew that the dress Kate Bosworth wore would truly have to dazzle! Here at Topshop HQ, we’re long-time admirers of the actresses’ faultless style so when we started brainstorming her look, we couldn’t think of a better way to create something magical and truly bespoke than by having Kate collaborate with our in-house design team on a custom-made gown. If you love the final result as much as we do, make sure you don’t miss out and register your interest in Kate’s dress.
With Kate in and out of Topshop HQ throughout the entire design process – from perfecting the toile to adding on beads in the final fitting – we were lucky enough to spend some time with her up in our pattern room. It was amazing to watch the initial sketch come to life and to give you a real insight into the process, we caught up with Kate.
What was the starting point for designing your custom-made dress?
I was emailing back and forth with the lovely designer on dresses about my initial thoughts on what I was feeling in terms of the movie and the character and we simply translated that feeling into this dress. I wanted a deeper red , a fire red, very close to Michelle Pfeiffer’s in The Fabulous Baker Boys but a little richer. I also knew I wanted it to be long sleeved and have stones on the inside, at the cuff and around the chest. It was all very quick, she sent me one sketch I said great, she sent me a fabric sample and the different crystal colours and from there it all came together.
What was it like when you started working on the dress with the design team at Topshop HQ?
When we got to London to try the toile on, it was really neat. I loved seeing our sketch translate into what can only be described as a potato sack! – and then working with the team on shaping it and finalizing all the details. Geraldine, the Head of Design Development at Topshop, who I worked with really closely throughout the whole process, really did such a beautiful job of making the dress the way I had envisioned it. It was challenging – what with the time constraints – but in a sense it made us make decisions by instinct and that can really bring a magical result. I’d go to a meeting and come out and the team would still be working on it. You know it was amazing, everyone putting in the effort to make something special!
What is it about Michelle Pfeiffer in this film that inspired you?
She’s amazing, one of the most engaging performers I’ve ever seen. In The Fabulous Baker Boys you can’t take your eyes off her. What I love about her performance is how bold she is but also how imperfect she is. I love that she was confident in those imperfections and I had to get my head around that idea too when I was recording the song. Her performance really allowed me to embrace the flaws and the beauties and it’s that which gives the vulnerability in her performance and hopefully mine too.
Was your make-up look inspired by Michelle’s in the film too?
The first thing I said to the make-up artist and the hair stylist was that this shouldn’t be a high fashion look. The make-up and hair isn’t overly styled in the film because essentially, the girl I’m playing is a lounge singer that’s going from city to city. She’s done this a million times and there’s a sort of vulnerability and sadness about her but she can really turn it on when she has to. We wanted to convey that she’s a little undone, a little raw and that was why the look was quite paired down.
We also managed to grab some time with our dress designer on the inspirations behind the dress and on working with Kate…
How did the design process start and what was your initial inspiration?
It began by discussing The Fabulous Baker Boys and Michelle Pfeiffer’s iconic red dress. We were keen to create a modern dress that captured the old starlet Hollywood glamour, whilst keeping it true to Kate’s own personal style.
How did Kate and yourself work together on the dress?
Kate and I began by discussing the silhouette. The dress had to be modern so we kept the length short and Kate came up with the idea of doing the curved front hem. Kate has a great eye for detail and was involved every step of the way. We were fortunate the design process happened so easily and we were both thinking along them same lines.
What were the highlights of the design?
For the dress we used a silk lame in a very striking claret noir colour. We wanted the dress to have a certain sex appeal and the intense dark red helped to achieve this. Applied to the dress were hundreds of Swarovski crystals in three different colours that created that beautiful shimmer you can see in the film. They fade in and out of the dress to add a touch of glamour in a modern way without being too overwhelming. Finally we had a cut out back, which again added an element of seductiveness and interest as we knew that Kate was going to be being filmed from all angles.
Watch Kate’s custom-made dress shimmer and shine in our Christmas film, Winter Wonderland, and don’t forget that you can register your interest in her dress and shop her make-up look over on Topshop.com.
If you love Kate’s Christmas track, be sure to download it on iTunes.
Make-up is a tricky thing. A layer of mascara too many, you’re in drag; A layer of foundation too little, you’re ghostly. Thank the beauty gods for make-up artist du jour Hannah Murray, who’s here to save your face for the season that’s all about looking good.
Murray has been spreading her magic across the industry for years, creating swoon-worthy campaigns for the likes of Alexander Wang and Jil Sander as well as striking editorials and front covers for major tastemakers i-D and British Vogue to our niche loves like Acne Paper and The Gentlewoman. Murray has stolen beauty journalists hearts both with her high-impact advertorials but also with her do-it-at-home nature. As for us at Topshop, we couldn’t pick a better consultant for our make-up collection. She’s even turned the whole office into make-up artists with her step by step make-up tutorials.
So, there’s no wonder ELLE magazine asked her expertise for an editorial dedicated to a week in make up to celebrate them giving away some delicious Topshop make-up goodies with every subscription this month. Murray jumped on board to create seven, (yes, seven!) day to night looks that you too can make work whatever the weather. Below, we’ve given a glimpse of three of our favourite looks but head over to ElleUK to find the rest!
60′s Coquettish Cool
Use Gel Liner in Ink £8 along your upper lash line, extending out and upwards to create feline eye. Apply the liner to the outer corner of your eye and smudge with Smoky Eyes Brush £7.