WE WERE EVERGREEN FESTIVAL DIARY

Posted on August 11, 2014

With V Festival coming up this weekend, it’s time to get outfit planning! Need inspiration? We’re having a fabulous throwback to London’s Lovebox with the ever-chic Fabienne from Parisian indie band We Were Evergreen – read on as she gives us the skinny on her festival-ready looks.

“This outfit is great for the summer festivals – the cut-out shoes are practical but keep me cool when I’m out and about.”

“Trying on some co-ordinating hats in the dressing room to keep up the summer feel of my ensemble!”

“I love this palm print, and the cut of the top. My metallic nails also add that little bit extra!”

“I like to keep my hair simple and low maintenance so when Elle offered to do my make-up, I went for neutral tones with a touch of glitter.”

“I wanted to add some more colour to my stage outfit, so I changed to this cut-out maxi dress, which is ideal to perform in.”

“And here we are, We Were Evergreen performing live onstage at Lovebox!”

Like Fabienne’s festival style? Get her looks and more right here and buy We Were Evergreen’s album ‘Towards’ here

THE GIRLS FROM CORONA DEL MAR

Posted on August 7, 2014

Best friends, heartache, growing up and seeing the world. If you’re looking for a book to satisfy your late summer literature cravings with serious shock and awe, The Girls from Corona del Mar might just be it. Author Rufi Thorpe looked back to her hometown for a book that flings you across the world and into characters from all walks of life. Whether it’s a sleepy coastal town in California, a wild time in India or studying at the leafy Yale University – there’s little time to pause in this fierce debut. Sounds intense, right? Don’t be scared by the pace. We can’t recommend this gorgeous novel enough. We chatted to Rufi about where to read it (in the bath, duh) and some tips for budding writers…

How would you describe the book to someone who hasn’t read it?

It’s a fast, dark little book about trying to love your best friend even when you don’t understand her or the choices she is making.

Was there a place or location that inspired the book?

I grew up in Corona del Mar, the town where the book begins, but which both girls ultimately leave, and something about using details of my own home town really made the book come alive in the first few drafts. All of the street names are flowers names in alphabetical order: Avocado, Begonia, Carnation, Dahlia, etc. You can hear sea lions barking at night. It used to be called a “toy town” because it was built as a vacation village, tiny picturesque houses with no heat or AC. It’s gone through many phases. Maybe that’s what I like best about places: they allow you to feel time passing.

Was there one friendship that inspired the book?
None of the plot of the book is autobiographical, but I am deeply inspired by my best friend, to whom the book is dedicated. My love for her has been one of the through lines of my life, one of those orienting elements helping me find north.
What do you think is the ultimate surroundings to reading the book in?
Oh, definitely in the bathtub. I’m pretty sure all books were meant to be read in the bathtub.
When did you first get into writing?

When I was fifteen. I had been writing poetry before that in the way that all thirteen year old girls write poetry, but at about fifteen I decided to start writing stories and that was it for me.

What’s the best career advice you’ve been given?
Writers are seldom given career advice since our situation is largely agreed to be hopeless. So I operate solely on a small piece of advice my mother gave me: you can’t control the gifts you were given, how smart or pretty or talented you are, but you can control how hard you work. If you are willing to work twice as hard as everyone else, you will find a place in the world. I was elated by this idea when I first heard it. I was so relieved that all I had to do was work hard– it was so simple. And it was wonderful not to have to bother with worrying about whether I was talented or not, which activity is frankly like looking at a handful of seeds and wondering if they are worth planting instead of just going ahead and planting them and giving it your all.
What advice would you give to other aspiring writers?

Never give up. You will never get good at it without spending years and years being bad at it. So you have to cultivate two things: a profound love for the activity itself, and an inability to listen to all the people telling you to stop.

The Girls From Corona del Mar by Rufi Thorpe is out now, priced £14.99. Share a picture of you and your best friend on Twitter and Instagram using #GirlsFrom for a chance to win two copies, one containing the dedication plate for a special message for a best friend. There are 20 sets to give away and one overall winner will also receive £250 Topshop vouchers. Competition closes 14 August. For full terms and conditions, click here.

TOPSHOP X PLAYLAND PRESENT: KENNY SCHARF

Posted on August 5, 2014

New York’s coolest place to hangout this summer is unquestionably Rockaway Beach’s Playland Motel, us Topshop girls had become so obsessed with this ace beach outpost that we just had to spend even more time there! Since July 6th we’ve been hosting our Summer Sundays at Playland – we’ve taken over the space with fun selfie booths, competitions, fashion decorations galore and some rad DJs from labels like Kitsune and band’s such as Gang Gang Dance. To celebrate our summer of fun in Rockaway who better than street artist Kenny Scharf – who had previously worked alongside Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring – to share the Rockaway love by painting an epic mural right across from the motel inspired by the beautiful locale. Swoon!

Watch the video to see Kenny’s live work in process and don’t forget to tell us about your time at Playland Motel using the hashtag #topshopxplayland.

THE BEST OF #REGENERATE14

Posted on August 4, 2014

We’ve already been raving about Generator Hostels for their boutique feel at purse-friendly prices, but now we’ve fallen in love with them even more after experiencing Regenerate14. Held at Generator’s hostel in Berlin, this was a specially curated weekend of art and music held in collaboration with Lab Magazine. Editors from the mag chose their favourite artists and musicians from around the world, who filled the hostel with installations, live performances and interactive art. Cool huh? Here’s our pick of the best stuff that went down:

THE PERFORMANCE ART

Definitely the most out-there piece we saw all week was a performance piece by Juan Miguel Pozo Cruz. This Cuban artist took over one of the hostel rooms for three days straight – inviting his friends and fellow-creatives to come and live in the space to explore the notion of ‘home’. As we entered the room we were greeted by guys and girls dancing around in morph suits, chatting to visitors, drawing on the walls and playing video games – crazy!

THE INSTA-MEET

Berlinstagram, aka Michael Schulz, is a Berlin based photographer that works by taking images exclusively with his iPhone camera and posting to Instagram. We joined other guests and Instagram lovers for an “insta-meet,” where Michael and fellow-photographer Lauren Lemon shared their know-how on taking the perfect Instagram pics, using the hostel as a backdrop to our photography.

MASER’S LIVING ROOM

Dublin-based artist Maser created a new living room for Generator, filled with furniture painted in his signature striped pattern. Guests were invited to come and sit in the space to chill out, socialise and enjoy gigs from the likes of kooky singer Magic Island. By far the coolest and most colourful living room we’ve ever hung out in!

THE CLOSING PARTY

Forget strobe lights, Liverpool artist David Ogle‘s light installation was all we needed to dance to at Regenerate’s closing party. Ogle filled the hostel car-park with hundreds of neon geometric forms that became brighter as they detected movement from the crowds. Dancers added to the mood with light-up hula hoops and skipping ropes, while we sipped on Vitamin Water cocktails and enjoyed music from some of the best bands in town.

Watch the video below for more and book your own Generator hostel trip here. The next Regenerate event takes place in Copenhagen from 8th-10th August. 

MEET OUR NEXT PROM WINNER!

Posted on July 31, 2014

This summer we gave our Pinterest fans the fashion opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to win a custom-made prom dress! We’ve already shown off the dress made for our US winner Gabi but now it’s time for our UK winner, Sophia. Sophia’s mood board won us over with its cool gothic feel, an aesthetic that our design team used to create her stunning dress – all intricate lace and dramatic details. We chatted to her at Topshop HQ while her dress got those all-important final tweaks…

What’s your prom going to be like?

It’a sit down dinner and dance at a stadium near my school. Me and my friends are arriving in a bright pink hummer, which will be hilarious!

Is your dress what you expected?

I’m so happy with it – the details really make it special.

Tell us about the mood board you created.

I wanted my dress to have a dark, gothic feel. My everyday style isn’t really like that but I found this image of an amazing gothic Valentino gown and fell in love! To get that across in the mood board I sourced loads of blogs to collect my inspiration. Not just dresses but anything that had the right feel – from art to black and white films.

What are you planning for your hair and make-up?

I want to wear my hair back to showcase all the lace and mesh on the dress.  Then for make-up I’ll either go for a bold lip or eye – I love cat eye flicks but I’m really bad at doing them myself so hopefully I can get a friend to help!

What are you most looking forward to about prom?

The build up! Getting ready with my friends is always the best bit. It’ll be one of the last times we spend together before we all go off to uni too.

Who would be your dream Prom King and Queen?

Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield would be adorable!

What kind of music are you into?

I tend to like older music like The Cure and The Smiths but lately there’s a band called Drowners that I really like – they played an intimate gig in Manchester which was great.

What blogs do you love?

I go on Tavi’s online magazine Rookie a lot – there’s some really interesting and varied content on there. I also like big ones like Fashion Toast – although the clothes are usually a bit out of my budget!

Addicted to any apps?

I can’t get enough of Shazam – I’m always hearing songs that I love but can’t remember the name, so it’s perfect for me!

Like Sophia’s dress? Pick up one of our Limited Edition dresses to style out your own scene-stealing look