“Blink” Events: Dries van Noten ‘Inspirations’ at Les Arts Decoratif, Paris

July 29th, 2014

Last week we hopped onto the Eurostar for a whistle-stop day trip to Paris. Firstly let me say how much I love that train. However many times I use it, it remains a thing of magic to get on in one country and emerge in a whole new one. Secondly let me share with you the even more deeply felt joy we felt when we hit the Dries van Noten exhibition at Les Arts Decoratifs.

You may have already noticed via the blog, our instagram and twitter that we are huge DvN fans. This only served to enhance that. The love affair all started when I first came across his collection in my first fashion industry job at Whistles. Whistles were one of the first UK retailers to buy his collection and I was so entranced by the aesthetic and attention to detail that I immediately wrote to Andries himself, asking for a job. I may not have even made it to an interview but I did receive a very charming letter from him in return, explaining that they were a very small team and not recruiting just now. I bet they are not such a small team now, and that success is very well deserved. Enough of the love-in, lets share some of the images form the exhibition with you.

Dries van Noten 'Inspirations', the entrance

Dries van Noten ‘Inspirations’, the entrance

This exhibition catalogues a huge array of DvN’s collections, blended with his inspiration from art to archival fashion pieces. These are displayed together in wonderful 3D moodboard like arrangements, showing how his aesthetic journey takes place, as well as blending in work from iconic labels taken from Les Arts Decoratif expansive fashion archive. The exhibition is quite dark, drawing you in to the spotlit cases, but the environment is far from stark with huge blown out versions of Dries van Noten signature florals blooming from the walls and across the floors.

Dries van Noten at Les Arts Decoratifs

Dries van Noten at Les Arts Decoratifs

Dries van Noten at Les Arts Decoratifs

Dries van Noten at Les Arts Decoratifs

Dries van Noten at Les Arts Decoratifs

Dries van Noten at Les Arts Decoratifs

Dries van Noten vintage fashion floral inspiration

Dries van Noten vintage fashion floral inspiration

Dries van Noten, left, and right is vintage Balenciaga

Dries van Noten, left, and right is vintage Balenciaga

Gold inspiration including vintage Chanel and Thierry Mugler

Gold inspiration including vintage Chanel and Thierry Mugler

Dries van Noten at Les Arts Decoratifs

Dries van Noten at Les Arts Decoratifs

Dries van Noten, 'Handmade' film by Karel de Cock

Dries van Noten, ‘Handmade’ film by Karel de Cock

Dries van Noten menswear inspiration

Dries van Noten menswear inspiration

If you love fashion, textiles and art this is a must see exhibition. It was due to end on 31st August but appears to have been extended until November so there are no excuses!

For more fashion inspiration, take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Music: Becky Hill ‘Caution to the Wind’

July 28th, 2014

Today’s #MusicMonday is from the very talented Becky Hill. We first came across her vocals via Rudimental, and then had the pleasure of seeing her perform live with them at the Bacardi Beginnings event. It’s been lovely to hear what kind of music she would make as a solo artist and of all the tracks released so far, this is our favourite.

‘Caution to the Wind’ show cases her voice, tone and range beautifully, and we really love the light production hand in this that adds a really interesting depth and diversity without masking her natural talent. It’s a mellow, heartfelt, slow and soulful song which we hope you’ll enjoy as much as we do.

For more Music Monday tracks, just look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Inspiration: Fall’14 Couture, Giambattista Valli

July 23rd, 2014

Haute Couture is the absolute creme de la creme of the fashion world. This is the rarefied and ultra exclusive Planet Couture where only the super rich live wafting through a breeze scented with privilege (and stacks of cash). Aside from the immense price tags, this is also the place where the magic is created by the amazingly skilled ‘petites mains’, white coated mistresses of the Couture Ateliers who turn the most fantastic of designer fantasies into reality.

Historically this has been above and beyond fashion as we know it but in the last decade there has been some exciting and innovative changes that mean this is more and more relevant to what is happening to fashion as a whole. Perhaps this is fuelled by the fact that there is more young money, or perhaps it’s due to the fact that many of the couture labels are  headed up by exciting new blood.

The only Couture collection we’ll be featuring is this undeniably fresh and innovative collection from Giambattista Valli. We shared his Resort’15 collection with you too. With an utterly youthful abandon to the combination of satin pyjama shirts with cloud like ombre tinted full skirts, topped off with those carelessly chic head scarves, this feels like couture fit for a party loving, up all night, wayward debutant. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if this designer was a fan of Roman Holiday.

The softer elements are perfectly offset with the graphic black and white which shows how a brilliant creative mind can turn simple stripes into a thing of utter grace and beauty. Volume comes in various guises, from petal style corsage embellishment in layers upon layers, to intricate silhouette manipulation and then those gob-smackingly gorgeous trailing tiered skirts.

Giambattista Valli, AW'14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW’14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW'14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW’14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW'14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW’14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW'14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW’14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW'14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW’14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW'14 Couture

Giambattista Valli, AW’14 Couture

All images with huge thanks to the wonderful Style.com. For more inspiration, just have a look here.

 

 

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Inspiration: Professor Dilys Williams

July 22nd, 2014

Here’s a small video with a very big message. Professor Dilys Williams is the founder and guiding force behind the Centre for Sustainable Fashion, working tirelessly with her amazing team to change our behaviours from right inside the heart of the fashion industry. If you would like to know what Sustainable and Ethical fashion is in a nutshell, watch this brief interview with Dilys on London Live.

http://www.londonlive.co.uk/news/ethical-fashion

For more retail news, take a look here. For more inspiration, then click here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Events: Legends of the Martini at the RA, 1st August- 31st August ’14

July 22nd, 2014

Premium vodka brand, and Blink Towers favourite, Belvedere has joined with the Royal Academy to bring to life a multi-sensory celebration of the iconic cocktail, titled Legends of the Martini

Legends of the Martini, Belvedere and the RA

Legends of the Martini, Belvedere and the RA

Not only will you learn about the evolution of the martini (both gin and vodka varieties) but the exhibition also includes the work of cutting edge names in photography, set design, film and music who have created ‘experiences’ to reflect some of those characters from popular culture who we all associate with this sophisticated tipple, whether it’s been shaken or stirred…

The exhibition/experience will be open to the public (free) from 10am-10pm daily and a pop-up bar selling a selection of Belvedere martinis will also be open outside the entrance to the experience from 6pm-10pm daily (excluding Friday). You will be able to buy additional tickets to enjoy a very thorough martini education in the bar, through the medium of drinking a specially selected set of mini cocktails. Claire Smith, head of mixology and spirit creation at Belvedere Vodka said: “The martini is one of the world’s most iconic drinks, it is steeped with history and glamour” “We want to demystify the drink, helping people work out which martini suits their palate and teaching them that there really is a martini to suit everyone.”  Now that sounds like a useful and practical education to me!

The details for the Belvedere Legends of the Martini Experience (includes curated experience and tasting):
Friday 1st August- Sunday 31st August
Royal Academy Senate Rooms (Burlington Street entrance)
Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BD
Opening times: 5pm-10:30pm Monday- Thursday
Midday- 10:30pm Friday and Saturday
Midday- 5pm Sundays
Price: £15 per session

Tickets available from: www.belvederevodka.com/martinilegends

Details for the Legends of the Martini (curated experience only):
Royal Academy Senate Rooms (Burlington Street entrance)
Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BD
Opening times: 10am 10:30pm Monday- Sunday
Free of charge

If you’re just interested in the drinking part then the Belvedere pop-up martini bar is open from 6pm-10pm Monday- Thursday, and 12-6pm on Sundays.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Competitions: Bestival & Mr Motivator need your creative skills

July 21st, 2014

Did you check out our tips on getting your outfit ready for Bestival 2014′s ‘Desert Island Disco’ theme? Well then you’ll be more than sorted already and perhaps looking for the next festival oriented creative challenge. Let us help you out with this Bestival barmy design competition…

Mr Motivator will be back at Bestival to help lift those flagging spirits whilst also ensuring your glutes are well warmed up for days and nights of booty shaking. Always a snazzy dresser, the big M is well known for his form fitting, rainbow-hued biketards. It seems that he hasn’t managed to track down one that is just right for working up a Desert Island Disco sweat in, so our help has been requested. Can you design him the ultimate Desert Island Disco biketard?

Just get your Karl Lagerfeld on and, using the special sheet which you can download here, let those creative juices flow! Once you’re satisfied that you have created the biketard of joy, email it to lycra@bestival.net or you can tweet or instagram Bestival your entry using #BestiLycra.

Bestival and Mr Motivator need YOU!

Bestival and Mr Motivator need YOU!

You can either print off  the special design sheet to hand-draw your idea or you can be tres modern and design it on your computer. The winning designer will get their Desert Island Disco Biketard made for Mr Motivator who will wear it at Bestival 2014, where the lucky winner will be watching from the side of the stage! The closing date for entries is Tuesday 29th July. Five lucky runners up will win a Bestival T Shirt! Where did I leave my felt tips?

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Music: Jessie Ware ‘Tough Love’

July 21st, 2014

I’m not sure if my choice for today’s Music Monday track has been influenced by my newly single status (must I really face Tinder AGAIN!?!) but aside from helping me through by being an ace song to yell along too at high volume (sorry neighbours), it’s also just a thoroughly gorgeous, multi-layered, deeply infectious and pretty much perfect track.

We’re long term Jessie Ware fans here at Blink Towers, yet with every new release we are freshly reminded of the beauty of her voice. ‘Tough Love’ is liltingly romantic yet still strong with a bold beat blended with a tad of 90′s syth pop. I am super excited that she’s playing at Wilderness as I haven’t yet seen her live. Hopefully I’ll be over my heartbreak by then and won’t be tempted to dash on stage and wail when she sings this particular song. Just jokes, probably…

This track is released on August 3rd. For more of our musical posts, just have a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Inspiration: Join the Land Army

July 18th, 2014

There has always been something utterly charming, inspirational and brilliant to me in the images of the ‘Land Girls’ from the First and Second World Wars. Women were mobilized as a home front fighting force, stepping into the shoes of those young men who has all been sent to fight for our freedom. Through this, women were working in roles that they had previously been excluded from, they were empowered, they showed their metal and they also got to wear the pants for a change.

I am no historian or political feminist, but even I can see how life changing this was, in addition to all of the more obvious changes wrought by wartime. Through this role reversal women also had to adopt more masculine clothes, driven by the use of uniforms and utter practicality. The women of the Land Army made this look their own, and I for one find it timelessly inspiring and have referred back to this repeatedly over my years as a fashion forecaster.

When researching a design project for a client recently, these images (mostly from WW2) came up again and have helped me to set the tone for an exciting new collection (that I may share with you sometime soon if I’m allowed!).

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

The Land Army, image via Pinterest with huge thanks. Blink London

For more inspirational insights, just have a look here.

 

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” streetstyle: red, white and blue on Carnaby Street

July 17th, 2014
streetstyle on Carnaby Street, from Blink London

streetstyle on Carnaby Street, from Blink London

streetstyle on Carnaby Street, from Blink London

streetstyle on Carnaby Street, from Blink London

For more super stylish street fashion, take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Music: Temples ‘Mermerise’

July 14th, 2014

We slip back a little to a January release, but we only just heard it so I guess we can still claim that this Temples track is new music. This Northamptonshire based foursome came together in 2012 and this track, ‘Mesmerise’ was released just before their first album, ‘Sun Structures’.

I love the refreshed variation on the classic psychedelic sound, embracing trippy bits of The Beatles back catalogue as well as something a bit reminiscent of The Stone Roses. I think that’s a exciting combination and the more I hear this track, the more I get in to it so we suggest you stick on repeat for a few times round and kick back with a cuppa while you contemplate some of life’s more mysterious questions…

For more great music, just have a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy