Archive for the ‘Inspiration’ Category

“Blink” 2015 Predictions: a strong material trend with BConcrete

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015

On top of our fashion fixation, we at Blink London are also interiors obsessed having worked for lifestyle brands in the past. This obsession is currently manifesting in a kitchen makeover we are undertaking at Blink Towers. We have the units all planned (thanks Ikea). We have the lighting all chosen (thanks Plumen). We have the tiles, tap, handles and wall colour all selected. The only thing that remained was to commit to a worktop. After lots and lots and lots of researching we found a great business to partner with on this all important element of our scheme. We’d like to introduce you to BConcrete, a Newquay based, highly innovative family business that is all about this highly on-trend material.

As part of our ‘2015 predictions’ series, we spoke to Anna Petersson, one half of the husband and wife duo behind BConcrete, about why they feel concrete is such a strong statement right now, and about how their business has evolved. Over to Anna:

We started making concrete worktops in Sweden 5 years ago, where concrete is huge, both for inside and outside. As a material for the home, its absolutely here to stay. I am Swedish and my partner in English, so we moved back to the UK 2 years ago and brought our ideas and practices to the UK market, thinking that the industrial fashion will grow here sooner or later!

We love the raw/industrial look of concrete and the many ways you can work with it. There is so much that you can do. We make bespoke furniture, home decor and worktops etc. It looks natural and is a very good alternative to granite or marble, plus it’s more economical! We love mixing concrete with other raw or recycled material like wood and metal too which helps to make each piece even more individual and unique.

BConcrete, concrete worktop

BConcrete

As the industrial/modern style is such a strong direction right now,  being seen a lot on design programs, I think people are starting to think of concrete in a different way and not just a building material. Many styles come and go, but we believe that polished concrete is here to stay for the long term as it´s a great sustainable material and after use it can easily be recycled as filling material etc.

Currently the most popular and most requested look for worktops and tables is the raw, only slightly polished concrete finish, retaining quite an ‘honest’ concrete look. We are also being asked to put in stones and glass pieces in worktops to create a terrazzo-style look which is super luxurious when it’s highly polished. A finish that is gaining in demand is for concrete looking like wood, where you can see the grains and the structure of the planks that were impressed into or used to enclose the wet concrete.

Mr BConcrete finishing a highly polished concrete tabletop

Mr BConcrete finishing a highly polished concrete tabletop

BConcrete have worked with concrete to create huge, industrial feeling statements right down to ultra delicate and fine decorative pieces. Our favourites from their product line have to be those gold lined bowls (perfectly in line with our previous prediction post!) and the surprising concrete based wine glasses. As our kitchen project progresses we will keep you updated on the look and finish we decide on.

BConcrete's wine glasses

BConcrete’s wine glasses

Golden lined, concrete bowls from Bconcrete

Golden lined, concrete bowls from Bconcrete

For more lifestyle posts, do take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” 2015 Predictions: Hey Jo on Super Styled Sportswear

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015

Here’s Hey Jo‘s prediction for the year ahead:

Hey Jo

Hey Jo’s wonderfully luxe leggings

“2015 is all about living a healthy lifestyle and doing it in style. More and more people are turning their attention to working out and in turn seriously luxe and chic activewear is becoming increasingly coveted. The yoga legging is a wardrobe staple providing the perfect piece to wear to the gym or dress up with a leather jacket, sneakers and a gorgeous bag. For the women on the go, who do it all having pieces that are comfortable for the active lifestyle they lead, yet do not compromise on style are a must. As designers become more creative with the sports luxe look, people have become more fearless, which is a great thing to see!”

Thanks to the Hey Jo team for their contribution to our predictions posts. There’s more to come too. If you’d like to see our previous inspirational prediction posts, just take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” 2015 Predictions: White part 2- structured

Friday, January 16th, 2015

Blink London 2015 prediction: structured white

Blink London 2015 prediction: structured white

Blink London 2015 prediction: structured white

Blink London 2015 prediction: structured white

Blink London 2015 prediction: structured white

Blink London 2015 prediction: structured white

We also feel strongly for white in a dense, solid, calm, defined, repetitive, constructed way across every aesthetic area of our lives, our surroundings, our clothes, our makeup and our belongings. We especially like this approach to white for Autumn Winter.

For more inspirational posts, look here. For more on colour, look here.

Many thanks to Pinterest for the images.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” 2015 Predictions: White part 1- softly

Friday, January 16th, 2015

Blink London 2015 predictions: white, softly

Blink London 2015 predictions: white, softly

Blink London 2015 predictions: white, softly

Blink London 2015 predictions: white, softly

Blink London 2015 prediction: soft white

We feel strongly for white in a veiled, soft, blurred, milky, chalky, featherlight, misty, romantic, haunting, sheer way across every aesthetic area of our lives, our surroundings, our clothes, our makeup and our scents.

For more inspirational posts, look here. For more on colour, look here.

Many thanks to Pinterest for the images.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Accessories: Anya wants to collaborate with you!

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015
Anya Hindmarch backstage LFW show- Morgan O'Donovan

Anya Hindmarch backstage LFW show- Morgan O’Donovan

Following on from yesterday’s prediction post all about collaborations, on the same topic we have a rather gorgeous project from Anya Hindmarch, in collaboration with Charlotte Stockdale of CHAOS FASHION. Launched in December, the Sticker Shop is also a collaboration between Anya, Charlotte and you! How’s that for a triumvirate of fashion excitement?

Recalling those heady creative days when we were all customising things ourselves; making them unique, absolutely ours and very special- cue a look back at our first 2015 prediction. Who of you has never doodled on your jeans with a biro? Well, now we have the ultra luxe version with beautiful embossed leather stickers featuring designs ranging from the alphabet to Mickey Mouse’s signature gloved hand.

Anya Hindmarch Sticker- Weather in Capra

Anya Hindmarch Sticker- Weather in Capra

Anya Hindmarch  Sticker-I Love It in Capra

Anya Hindmarch Sticker-I Love It in Capra

Anya HIndmarch's Sticker Shop at Selfridges

Anya Hindmarch’s Sticker Shop at Selfridges

You can short-cut the decision making process and buy a bag that’s ready stickered or you can get your creative juices flowing by hitting up the Sticker Shop in Selfridges. Perhaps you’d prefer to experiment virtually? Then you must try the brilliant virtual sticker shop (hours of fun to be had here!). I am in the throws of deciding which pair of jeans I will treat to an Anya Hindmarch sticker make-over, or perhaps I’ll treat myself to a personalised purse ?

Ebury Maxi Featherweight All Over Stickers in Chalk Capra

Ebury Maxi Featherweight All Over Stickers in Chalk Capra

Anya Hindmarch's alphabet stickers

Say my name Anya!

For more accessories posts, just take a look here. For more inspirational predictions posts, then look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” 2015 Predictions: Collaborations (a+b=yay!)

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

To continue our series of predictions posts, at Blink Towers we’ve been talking lots about the importance of collaborations and whether they will still be so topical in the season’s ahead. Well, we have decided that the collaboration is a key part of the creative journey and perhaps the only change will be in how this partnership functions for the parties involved.

Some of the mega brands do the super power collaboration very well. That is where equally well known, brilliant and successful parties join forces, bringing their specific expertise and kudos to the project. Marc Jacobs did this brilliantly and ground-breakingly at Louis Vuitton. Adidas does this with a diverse selection of fashion success stories (Yohji with Y3, Stella McCartney and most recently Mary Katrantzou). These work because it is a win/win of genius, creativity and genuine expertise, allowing established brands to deliver a look that is an exciting departure from their expected look.

Louis Vuitton x Takashi Murakami Panda Bag

Louis Vuitton x Takashi Murakami

Are the H&M x Designer collections a collaboration? We’re not sure?!? It seems more that H&M creates a production route and a platform for unreachable, aspirational brands to deliver a collection that is accessible to the fashion masses but there isn’t an exchange of creative concepts and values in the way that a true collaboration should perhaps operate. We do love them though!

H&M's Designer collections

H&M’s Designer collections

For us the best collaborations lift both parties up and carry them into new arenas, bringing them to the attention of new audiences and expressing the best of each partner. The fabulous Kering collaboration with LCF certainly falls into this category. You can read more about that here.

We think that the most exciting future of collaborations in the fashion industry will be those that take a David and Goliath stance. Not from the catapulted stone between the eyes angle, but from the giant and the newby perspective. How amazing would it be for those product behemoths to take brand-new talent, fledgling brands, creative experimenters and fresh-faced innovators and provide them with the environment to learn, grow, and deliver exciting new concepts through a collaboration? We hope to see lots of this going forward. I think it would be a huge game-changer and a really vibrant and energetic opportunity. So, all you Goliaths out there, the next step is up to you!

Images with many thanks to the wonder that is Pinterest.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” 2015 Predictions: Heidi Klein choose the One Piece

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Thanks to the Heidi Klein team for contributing their prediction for 2015:

“Our predictions for 2015 are that One Piece’s are going to be big. Whether it’s a classic chic style or a nautical striped number, the One Piece will make you feel gorgeous whilst away on travels.”

Here are some of their key one piece styles from the current Heidi Klein collection…

CORELLI eyelet one piece, from Heidi Klein

CORELLI eyelet one piece, from Heidi Klein

HONFLEUR bandeau one piece, from Heidi Klein

HONFLEUR bandeau one piece, from Heidi Klein

Tanzania Ubar One piece, from Heidi Klein

Tanzania Ubar One piece, from Heidi Klein

More predictions for 2015 to come so do keep looking.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Lifestyle: Linley’s new future classics

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Following on from yesterday’s prediction post about all things golden, we felt it was the perfect time to share with you this truly stunning new piece from Linley. We were invited to get to know more about this wonderful British business, founded by David Linley and best known for working with heritage inspired, stunningly crafted, marquetry detailed wood furniture. In fact there is so much more to this brand.

I has honoured to meet the heads of the design and development team who showed me some incredibly surprising and utterly stunning new look pieces that were specifically created to be shown at Masterpiece. These are indeed absolutely masterpieces, and our favourite is this Silhouette Chair.

Linley's Silhouette Chair

Linley’s Silhouette Chair

Linley's Silhouette chair

Linley’s Silhouette chair

Linley's Silhouette chair

Linley’s Silhouette chair

Created from a stunningly ergonomically shaped, single sheet of copper that has been hand hammered by craftsmen who usually work on restoring and rebuilding the panelling on classic cars. That is then wrapped in the softest, neutrally toned analine leather. This almost floats on the hand finished walnut frame which is finished with an angular copper stretcher, reflecting and mirroring the beautifully undulating seat panel.

The overall feel is both modern and somewhat mid century, and also utterly innovative. This is what craft means to us and this is how companies founded on traditional techniques will keep those deeply gifted and painstakingly trained craftspeople in business, pushing those traditional techniques in new directions, working with new materials and delivering innovative design. To celebrate the intense and amazing processes that went into this product, here are some ‘in the making’ shots to show that copper seat panel being constructed.

Linley's Silhouette chair 'in the making'

Linley’s Silhouette chair ‘in the making’

Linley's Silhouette chair 'in the making'

Linley’s Silhouette chair ‘in the making’

Linley's Silhouette chair 'in the making'

Linley’s Silhouette chair ‘in the making’

Thanks so much to all of the Linley team who gave me so much of their time. It was an utterly inspiring experience.

For more lifestyle posts, take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” 2015 Predictions: A Golden Year

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

We have all been indulging in metallics for a few seasons now, and that will continue. If you are anything like us at Blink Towers, a little sparkle goes a long way (but a lot is always the best choice). Silver is the metallic fall-back position as it can almost be considered a neutral. We also like a holographic feeling, rainbow tinted finish. However, for 2015 it’s all about a golden glow. From full on bright fools gold to paler, softer or duller antique shades. Embracing rose gold, bronze and copper for the warmest, prettiest and perhaps even the more sophisticated side of this story.

We will wear it and live in it, be surrounded by it and bask in it. Yes, 2015 will indeed be a golden year.

image with thanks to Pinterest, golden balloons

image with thanks to Pinterest

A Golden Year: How we will wear it. Images with thanks to Pinterest

A Golden Year: How we will wear it. Images with thanks to Pinterest

A Golden Year: How we will live with it. Images with thanks to Pinterest

A Golden Year: How we will live with it. Images with thanks to Pinterest

We hope that you found yesterday’s prediction thought-provoking. There will be more over the weeks ahead so keep looking.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” 2015 Predictions: The Fashion Afterlife

Tuesday, January 6th, 2015

As we promised you this morning, we are kicking off the year with some predictions for the year ahead. Some will be big, far reaching statements and others will be small and very focussed but no less significant.

I’m starting with a theme that we have been looking at and discussing for quite some time. We are calling it ‘The Fashion Afterlife’.  We hope that you all embracing the trend towards mending rather than binning your garments. There are many brands, mostly better-end menswear outwear, sportswear or footwear labels, that offer customers a repair or refurnish service. I hope to see more of this in 2015. How great would it be to see Topshop hosting ‘Make Do and Mend’ sewing circles with skilled menders teaching how to darn, patch or mend your Toppers favourites?

Image with thanks to Pinterest. Make do and mend with elbow patches on your knitwear.

Image with thanks to Pinterest

We have to slow down this rabid consumption somehow, and wouldn’t you have a higher regard and a bit more love for those old jeans if you’d invested some time in searching out just the right patch to cover up that tear you made when spinning out post tequila slammer? We need to build that stronger relationship with our clothes to make us cherish them, care for them and ultimately wear them for longer so we are each buying less frequently and certainly never again turning a tee into a duster because the hem fell down.

Image with thanks to Pinterest. A patched and mended collar

Image with thanks to Pinterest

As part of their utterly integrated approach to being a thoroughly sustainable brand, Patagonia have teamed up with IFIXIT to create some easy to follow instructions on how to mend some of their key products. On the Patagonia website, they also have a great page to ‘help make sure that your gear has a long, interesting life. as they put it. It would be wonderful in 2015 to see more brands, great and small, take on this approach to increasing product durability and longevity without negatively affecting aesthetics. It is more than possible.

But what about when your product is beyond the healing powers of needle and thread? How will you give your old faithful an ethical and sustainable end-of-life experience? Well, we think that this is where the real newness comes in. Your first stop is obviously to take unwanted garments to your local charity shop. However, if you are letting it go because it’s beyond all hope of resuscitation, then that’s not an option. Back to Patagonia again, who offer a recycling service for their products that have reached this stage in their lifecycle. Just brilliant.

Image with thanks to Pinterest. Mended, patched and darned denim jeans

Image with thanks to Pinterest

How amazing would it be to buy a product that comes with an end of life plan already built in? What if brands worked in a really in-depth, sustainable way that encompassed the whole of the products lifecycle, from fibre to even beyond its final gasp of wearability. What if your product came with a promise to provide you with access to information on how to best care for it, protect it and mend it above and beyond those graphic symbols that show you how to wash a thing like Patagonia do? What if you could have the option of returning it to the manufacturer who would then deconstruct it and recycle or re-use all of the elements because they are making future product using the same trims or fibre composition? Or perhaps they have partnered with a company that makes something completely else but that needs your old garments to recycle and remake back into a cup or a bottle or part of a shoe?

We believe that this whole lifecycle and afterlife will be considered and planned in, accessible and soon enough, normal for all of us to engage with. What an exciting prospect for 2015. One thing is sure, if you demand it then it will happen sooner and as far as those that know are concerned, sooner is the only option…

Enjoy! Lucy