TOPSHOP TARGETS BREAST CANCER

Posted on April 9, 2014

We like nothing better than a feel good fashion fix, which is why we’ve teamed up with Fashion Targets Breast Cancer once again – the amazing charity dedicated to saving lives through improving early diagnosis, developing new treatments and preventing all types of the disease. This year we’re showing our love with a cool slogan heart t-shirt, and you’ll be happy to hear that 30 percent of proceeds will go straight to the cause. With this in mind there’s really no excuse to pick one up, raise awareness and fight breast cancer in style.

One inspirational woman doing just that is model and writer Laura Bailey. This year she joined Fashion Targets Breast Cancer alumni including Naomi Campbell, Kate Moss and Twiggy as a spokesmodel for the charity, urging you lovely lot to #wearyoursupport by buying pieces from the collection. We caught up with her to find out what makes the charity so close to her heart.

How did you get involved with FTBC?

I’d worked with FTBC in the past, and this time I said an immediate yes to the chance to be part of an important campaign alongside incredible women and an inspiring team.

How can fashion help the cause?

Fashion Targets Breast Cancer has raised over £13 million for life-saving research – we can all help to raise awareness and donate by buying specially designed products such as Topshop’s tee. The fashion industry offers a dynamic springboard to the campaign, marrying the idea of something we want to wear with something we want to say – or change. We can wear our hearts on our hearts…

What will you be wearing it with?

Pride. And anything – but perhaps when the sun’s shining with my denim cut-offs, or a floral midi-skirt. Or hopefully next week, just my bikini.

How would you describe your style?

English, emotional, eclectic, impulsive. Rapunzel in hi-tops.

Who inspires your style?

Three women whose style (and more) I’m always inspired by are Amanda Harlech, Bella Freud and Lou Doillon. And Catherine Deneuve is forever my beauty icon.

Your career has spanned model, writer, BFC ambassador and more. What’s been the highlight?

I tend to be most excited about the here and now, and rarely look back. But the most fulfilling fashion experiences are always thanks to inspiring collaboration, whether that’s with a photographer, filmmaker, stylist or designer. I recently loved working with jewellery designer Solange Azagury Partridge on ‘Metamorphosis,’ a stop-frame animated film where I worked alongside dancing gold skeletons and a Pandora’s box of treasures. And on the flip-side, much as I thrive on teamwork, I’m also happy travelling alone, with just my camera and notebooks, far from the maddening crowd.

What are you most proud of in life?

My extraordinary kids.

What advice would you give to yourself in your late teens/early 20s?

Relax. Have faith. And don’t give up French.

What does the next year have in store for you?

Adventures.

Make like Laura and support Fashion Targets Breast Cancer by picking up a Fashion Targets ‘Love’ Tee.

MEET THE FREEDOM COMPETITION WINNER

Posted on March 11, 2014

Winner Evie (far left)

Freedom at Topshop teamed up with Central Saint Martins to find a hot, new jewellery designer to create an exclusive range debuting in Topshop Oxford Circus in September 2014.

Winner Evie Armstrong-Clarke impressed the prestigious panel of judges including Emma Farrow, Head of Design at Topshop Unique; fine jewellery designer, Solange Azagury-Partridge; Vivien Thomason, Buying Director at Freedom at Topshop; Nicky Yates, Fashion Director at ES Magazine; Victoria Bain, Shopping & Jewellery Editor of The Telegraph; Pandora Sykes, Fashion Editor of The Debrief and Donna Wallace, Accessories Editor at UK Elle Magazine.

We chatted with second year BA Jewellery Design student Evie, to find out what it takes to get noticed by the best names in the business.

Tell us about your designs for Freedom at Topshop?

When I started the project in the summer of 2013, I was really drawn to all the new architecture emerging. I started to go to as many different locations as possible taking pictures of these new buildings and extracting shapes from the architecture.

What is your design aesthetic like? What materials do you usually use?

For this project in particular, I liked the minimal and slightly abstract designs. For example, the structure of glass and use of light in buildings such as the Gherkin and the Shard really fed into my design, particularly with the clear and frosted acrylics, etc. I am interested in plastics, but there are many qualities I’m still experimenting with. I guess it’s hard to say in my second year as every material I encounter is from something of interest and proves it’s own challenges.

What inspired your Freedom at Topshop designs?

It was the exciting and rapid evolution that London’s skyline was undergoing that I speak of above. It’s very current and stylised and will inevitably soak into our design aesthetics too.  Once I got drawing, collaging and model making on the body, the shapes evolved quite naturally.

Who is the Topshop girl to you? 

The pieces were intended to be made ‘for the Londoner, inspired by London itself’. One of my early mood boards had in mind the modern metropolitan woman, so I suppose the Topshop girl I had in mind would be her!

How did it feel to win?

I think I swore a little in front of a lot of people! I was really shocked. Everyone else had such amazing designs so it was a close call. I feel very lucky.

Who are your favourite jewellery designers and why?

I’ve always loved Gijs Bakker; he has such humour and a fresh enthusiasm for design that’s always changing. I like how he sees very little boundaries between jewellery and other forms of design, which is something I aspire to as it’s good to keep your options open. There are a lot of names I could drop in here, but in general I’m a fan of quite contemporary or statement design… something to make people question the limits of jewellery a little.

Which museum in London would you recommend to get an idea of jewellery in history?

The Victoria & Albert Museum. They have the William and Judith Bollinger Jewellery Gallery, which is like some funny time-warp, you could spend all day in there!

What’s special about Freedom at Topshop jewellery? Do you wear it yourself?

The designs come from a team of hard working and talented designers; they have a really creative environment with lots of momentum and I really enjoyed seeing that. This means new ideas are generated constantly at an impressive rate – I don’t think people realise how difficult that is! I am a fan of Freedom at Topshop jewellery, however student budgeting has left me with a few long-term charms I wear all the time – a bit of a boring answer for a jewellery student!

If you could ransack anyone’s jewellery box, who would it be?

I’ve actually salvaged a lot of things from my grandmother’s through my mum. Some of the pieces I’ve slightly recreated but I think she had quite nice taste! I am also really intrigued by our course leader at Central Saint Martins, Caroline Broadhead’s, jewellery collection. I imagine it would include some of the early work of past jewellery designers who graduated CSM in the past, which would be fun to see.

How do you find the course at CSM?

We’ve been given the most amazing opportunities so far. We’re very spoilt, really. It’s always challenging but I really love it.

What advice would you give someone wanting to get into jewellery design or applying to CSM?

Be open-minded. I never thought that I would end up in jewellery design when I did my foundation course (I originally thought I would do fine art painting), I thought it was going to close off a lot of options for me, but it has introduced me to a whole new way of design with the body in mind. It’s good to question what you think jewellery is and to be brave in showing that.

What’s the best advice you’ve been given in your career so far?

To make mistakes, and gladly! I used to be so scared of getting it wrong but sometimes that’s the best thing that can happen.

Check out the newest must-have jewels from Freedom at Topshop. Evie’s collection will be available to buy from September 2014.

WE LOVE BEAUTYMART!

Posted on March 11, 2014

Instagram @Topshop

It’s a familiar scenario. You need a new moisturiser, but you’re overwhelmed by endless products that seem to do the same thing. So naturally, we jumped for joy when BeautyMART came to Topshop. Founded by Millie Kendall of Ruby & Millie fame and former Vogue Beauty Director Anna-Marie Solowij, BeautyMART is our one-stop shop for hard-to-find products that really work. You can shop BeautyMART directly on Topshop.com here or get the boutique experience instore at our London Oxford Circus flagship.

We caught up with co-founder Millie to get the scoop on her desert island products and beauty moments she’d rather forget!

What makes BeautyMART different from the tones of other beauty stores out there?

None are really doing what we do, selecting and editing the best products and selling them in a fun and exciting place with brilliant and knowledgeable staff and superb service. Traditionally beauty stores and chemists sell brands, not individual products and the sales staff are brand-trained, not impartial. We look at products like a magazine editor would. So you get only the most interesting, high performing, fashion-focused finds.

How did you know Anna was the right person to start your business with?

I have known Anna since she was the Beauty Editor at ELLE magazine and watched her career unsurprisingly lead her to become Beauty Director at Vogue. She is ultimately a great curator of beauty and that is the backbone of BeautyMART.

Do you ever disagree over products?

All the time, if we didn’t it wouldn’t be the edited array it is. We use cosmetics differently; have different skin, hair and features so we like different things as well as the products we both love.

Do you test everything yourself?

Absolutely. It has to pass the test!

If you had to choose one product to use for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Gosh that is so hard! Balmain Salt Spray probably. It is the best product to create that beach hair look, and I grew up in LA so need a bit of beach with me everywhere I go!

Have you ever made a big beauty mistake?

All the time, I wouldn’t be able to do my job if I hadn’t! When I look at old pictures I wonder why I ever left the house thinking I looked OK and then I find those looks being reinvented and think that perhaps sometimes what seemed like a mistake was simply just fashionable. Have confidence and you can pull anything off!

What’s your favourite make-up look at the moment?

I have been so anti-bronzer for years, but now I love a good matte bronze and some contour. It really accentuates the cheekbones and can be worn by anyone.

What advice would you give to someone looking to start their own business?

Have guts and passion and expect not to sleep much!

There are so many skincare products on the market – sometimes the choice can be overwhelming! What do you think is the one product that really makes a difference?

Embryolisse cream, it’s the best all round moisturiser I have ever used and is backstage at the shows. If a make-up artist loves it you can’t go wrong.

And with make-up?

Fairydrops mascara, a cult Japanese lash builder – anything Japanese works for me!

What do you think is the most common beauty myth?

That eyebrows look good painted on! They only look good when they look natural! I see so many hideous incarnations of brows. And it is true, as you age brows don’t grow back so don’t over-pluck!

Don’t miss out on all the make-up must-haves and visit BeautyMART instore at Topshop Oxford Circus store or online here. 

SNAP A SELFIE TO WIN A PAIR OF JEANS!

Posted on January 30, 2014

Listen up, denim fanatics. To celebrate the latest and greatest additions to our classic jean collection – including the new Baxter skinnies and the slouchy Girlfriend style – we are giving you the chance to win a brand new pair of Topshop jeans.

Sound good? We thought so. Simply Instagram or Tweet us a selfie of you in your favourite Topshop jeans using the hashtag #TopshopLovesJeans for the chance to win.

But, before you get snap-happy, check out our fun guide to taking the perfect selfies below and read our T&C’s for the UK and the US.

Good luck! You can check out all the entries so far by searching for #TopshopLovesJeans on Twitter and Instagram.

Top tips for flawless selfies:

1. For the most flattering body shot, stand adjacent to a full-length mirror, slant your hip to one side and jut the opposite shoulder forward. Next, lean your chest towards the mirror and aim your phone camera down the body to create a more streamline silhouette (it’s a secret supermodel trick). Then, snap away with your free hand. Simple.

2. Natural daylight is always best.

3. Get creative and have fun with filters. For example, our spray-on skinny Jamie jeans are an ideal match to the retro-inspired, 1977 Instagram filter.

4. Take a series of shots then edit, edit, edit.

5. Smile!

TOP 5 AT THE TURBINE HALL

Posted on January 26, 2014

Topshop Fashion Week is special for many reasons. Not only do we bring the best trends, hottest models and an A-list FROW (hello Anna Wintour and Kate Moss), but each season we also pick a stunning venue to showcase the lot. And this time we’ve really outdone ourselves by securing the Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall as the backdrop for our AW14 shows!

An ex-power station and now the lobby to the Tate Modern gallery, the Turbine Hall has hosted some of the world’s most memorable modern art works. We love nothing more than spending a Sunday in the dramatic space – whether that’s drooling over the art or people watching. Recently sponsored by Hyundai for a further 11-years, the Turbine Hall’s past commissions are simply iconic and we couldn’t be happier to be joining a space so celebrated for its creativity. So to show just how excited we are, we’ve rounded up our favourite Turbine Hall installations of all time!

1. Louise Bourgeois – Spider

Arachnophobics look away – Louise Bourgeois’s Maman was the gigantic steel spider made for the opening of Tate Modern in 2000. Supported on eight slender, knobbly legs, its body was suspended right to the top of the hall, allowing the viewer to walk around underneath it. The spider later took some time outside of the gallery and greeted visitors between the river and the Tate.

2. Olafur Eliasson – The Weather Project

Eliasson transformed the Tate into a beautiful sunset haven during his spell at the hall. Humidifiers created a fine mist in the air while a huge semi-circular sun radiated yellow light. The ceiling was covered with a mirror, where visitors could see themselves as tiny black shadows against a mass of orange light.

3. Doris Salcedo – Shibboleth

Columbian-born Salcedo’s installation took the form of a 167 metre, meandering crack right through the floor of the Turbine Hall, modelled on a Colombian rock face. Probably the most talked about Turbine Hall installation, you can still see the marks that filled in the crack today.

4. Ai Weiwei – Sunflower Seeds

This controversial Chinese artist filled the entire Turbine Hall with some 100 million sunflower seeds. But however realistic they might have seemed, each seed was in fact intricately hand-crafted in porcelain and painted by specialists from the Chinese city of Jingdezhen.

5. Anish Kapoor – Marsyas

Renowned for his awe-inspiring sculptures, Anish Kapoor teamed up with architect Cecil Balmond to create ‘Marsyas’ for the Turbine Hall in 2003. Thought to be one of the biggest exhibition works in the world, the enormous steel and PVC structure is based around an ancient story from Greek mythology. Epic.

These five art hits got you hankering for some culture? Why not pop along to the Tate Modern to see the gallery’s upcoming exhibition: Henri Matisse: Cut-Outs, open from 17 April – 7 September 2014.

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