Elizabeth Taylor Fashion moments.

The last, great Hollywood Goddess of the Golden Era died this week. Elizabeth Taylor was the child star who grew up to become a Hollywood legend. Stunningly beautiful, with perfect violet eyes, she was famous for her looks, her talents and her tumultuous love life.

Elizabeth Taylor wasn’t a style icon in the same way as her contemporaries Audrey Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor are viewed. But taking a glimpse through the archives it is clear that she did have moments of high style that make her someone for fashion lovers to admire and cherish forever. Here are some of those moments.

1951 – Edith Head – A place in the Sun.

This was the film that really introduced the grown up Elizabeth to the world. A place in the Sun is a tale of greed, lust and murder. Elizabeth played a beautiful young socialite who falls in love with Montgomery Clift’s character George. In the most iconic scene, a spellbinding Elizabeth walks into a billiards room and sees George for the first time. She was wearing  a beautiful white tulle ball gown designed by Edith Head. This romantic gown became a fashion hit and was much copied.

Rhapsody 1954

This is a little remembered film which showcases Elizabeth Taylor at her loveliest. Again, she plays a rich girl, which means a treat for us in terms of her glorious 1950s wardrobe filled with neat suits and satin ball gowns, complete with ladylike white gloves.

The Last Time I saw Paris (1954)

There were too many times Elizabeth Taylor wasted her talents in poor movies. But one of her best roles was as the tragic Helen in The Last Time I saw Paris, opposite Van Johnson. Another movie filled with a range os stylish looks.

Slip dresses in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) and Butterfield 8 (1960).

Two of Taylor’s best known roles saw her dressed in a similar fashion by way of silk slips. As Maggie the Cat, she played opposite Paul Newman in the role of a neglected wife and smouldered in a white slip. She won an Oscar for playing Gloria in Butterfield 8 in 1960, a role based on the Starr Faithful case of the 1930s. Elizabeth hated Butterfield 8, and believed the Oscar was won by her tracheotomy, rather than her performance, but the look in this movie has been much copied by those sporting underwear as outerwear, and copied by designers such as John Galliano, who even dressed Princess Diana in a slip dress. Nars also recreated the Gloria look for a special set of photos for their 15th anniversary, with Dayle Haddon in Liz mode.

Cleopatra (1962)

This featured possibly the most famous make up job in history. The iconic images of Liz, still in full Cleopatra make up, whizzing around the streets of Rome on the back of a Vespa are legendary.

The Oscars

One of the most famous Oscar appearances ever came in 1970, when a luminous Taylor wore an Edith Head designed gown to the ceremony, and accessorised with the enormous Krupp diamond. This diamond, purchased by Richard Burton from Cartier for $1million, became known forever after as the Taylor-Burton diamond.

Elizabeth also wore a truly beautiful red strapless Halston dress to the ceremony in 1976.

A whole host of fabulous looks and film memories, Elizabeth Taylor was a true movie star.  A legend to the last, her coffin arrived 15 minutes late to her funeral because she wanted to be late to her own funeral. RIP Elizabeth Taylor, there will never be another like you.

Markus Lupfer brings style and Charm to Birmingham

Markus Lupfer, is, without doubt, one of fashion’s brightest stars. His ebullient take on knitwear filled with acres of sparkle is adored by fashionistas and A-List celebrities alike. So it was a very excited Fashion-Mommy who made her way to the fabulous Harvey Nichols store in Birmingham’s Mailbox on Wednesday night to watch an exclusive trunk show presented by the great man himself, along with Relative Mo’s Sara Byworth – PR par excellence.

Sara Byworth

Harvey Nichols are true masters of hospitality at these events, and this occasion was a  great example of this. Champagne and fabulous canapes were available for guests, along with a wonderful goodie bag for each spectator. A stage had been set up and Markus Lupfer designs, from both the Baroque collection and new collection White Mischief , were displayed to entice.

Markus and Sara were able to talk about the new collection – the trends, the inspirations and ways to wear. The show opened with a particularly strong look, a gorgeous striped dress that had a timeless quality to it. Stripes are a key staple for any wardrobe, being a trend that recurs every year. Markus described it as that fabulous French look, and it is hard to disagree.

Breton style stripes - a wardrobe classic

The next design featured one of those fabulous embellished pieces that Markus Lupfer has become synonymous with. As Sara explained, when people ;think Markus they think lips’ and this hand embellished jumper was from the Baroque lips collection. Markus teased with the information that the Lip design may change next season, with a gaped tooth look – maybe a tribute to Georgia May Jagger, and so this particular lip look may become highly collectible.

This season has been very important to Markus Lupfer with the launch of his first menswear collection, which is exclusive to Harvey Nichols. The first mens item on display was the simple, yet striking Eagle print t-shirt.

One of my favourite items from Markus is the Golden Pair jumper. This was the next item, and Sara summed up the ingenuity of designs when she said that Markus ‘left no stone unturned over what could be put on a jumper in embellishment. This particular design is just so versatile, pretty for daywear yet ultra glamorous when teamed with shorts and heels – perfect for a Summer barbecue.

Markus ‘s latest collection is inspired by the film White Mischief. This 1988 film tells the story of the still unsolved death of Joslyn Hay, the Earl of Erroll, in Happy Valley, Kenya in 1941. This story had all the ingredients of a juicy scandal, sex, jealousy, murder, intrigue and the aristocracy at play.The key suspect for the murder was Sir Jock Delves Broughton, the grandfather of tragic Fashionista Isabella Blow. Markus has used safari animal prints and colours in this inspired collection, and, with a touch of genius casting, used Lydia Hearst, no stranger to family scandals herself, as the model for the collection. I loved the cheetah print top from this range, especially when worn with the cute shorts with the perspex lips. It was a fresh look that would look equally great with jeans for a cute and casual look. Cat Deeley is pictured wearing this top.

Markus Lupfer and Lydia Hearst

The beautiful dress below, which reminded me of a stunning firework, was also worn by Cat Deeley, who is a massive fan of Markus Lupfer. She is in good company. Alexa Chung, Edie Campbell, Rihanna, Donna Air, Lily Allen and Olivia Palermo have all been photographed in Markus designs.

Cat Deeley wore this dress for an appearance on breakfast tv

One of my favourite looks from the collection was the ‘I put a spell on you’ top that is just the perfect day-to-night item. Markus explained that he sees the top worn with ballet flats for daywear, and then teamed with heels for sexy, modern evening wear.

Markus explained the inspiration behind his Baroque collection, which contains some of his most embellished pieces. He explained that the inspiration came from his childhood in Southern Germany, a place of magical castles and lakes. A beautiful black dress was described as a day dress that had been covered with gems as a way of playing with embellishment.

For those who think that Markus Lupfer just means knitwear, there were so many beautiful examples that his designs are so much more than this. There was the grey bodycon style dress that had a corset style design on the front, there was the pretty vest with the chain and grosgrain ribbon detail, the beautiful fringed 20s style skirt that had been previously worn by super stylish Olivia Palermo, and there was the beautiful blush layered dress that would be the perfect Summer wedding guest dress.

There were tantalising hints of what will come next from Markus Lupfer. Currently designing his resort collection, he said that stripes and lips will continue to be big looks for the brand,and that the blush dress was a key look, but that there would be more colour in the resort collection.

There was just time for a question and answer session before the evening ended. I asked Markus who he would like to dress who hasn’t worn his design before. He was very humble with answer, saying that he loves it when he sees normal people wearing his design, feeling a real sense of pride, but that he would love to dress Kate Moss. He also spoke of his pride when he saw the pictures of supermodel Claudia Schiffer wearing his designs.

Markus Lupfer is a true inspiration, amazingly talented, charming, friendly and unassuming. His collections are fabulously fun and eminently wearable. I felt honoured to be in his company listening to him speak with such passion about his work.

 

THANK YOU TO MY SISTER JODIE FOR TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS – MUCH EASIER TO TAKE NOTES WHEN SOMEONE ELSE HAS THE CAMERA!!!

White Stuff says it with flowers for Mother’s Day.

Mother’s day is less than two weeks away. Last week I took my little boy into a greetings card shop to show him exactly what I DON’T want on the 3rd April. Call me ungrateful, but I don’t want any cuddly toys cradling lovehearts with ‘The World’s best mommy’ slogans emblazoned on them. In fact, I don’t want anything with ‘World’s best Mommy’ on the front. No tacky crap for me, thank you very much!

But I am partial to flowers..or at least something floral.  And that is a bonus this year, because one of my favourite stores, White Stuff, has unveiled an amazing collection of floral print dresses, tunics and tops that would be perfect for any mom. From the’ So Pretty’ kaftan to the Enigma dress, there is something to suit all tastes.

So, give your mom a real treat this year, she’ll love you even more for it!

 

So Pretty Kaftan

 

 

Malawi Knit Cardigan

 

 

Zanzibar Kaftan

 

 

Enigma dress

 

 

Dotty Flower Scarf

 

 

Natasha Leather Purse

 

And if your mom doesn’t flowers, how about the Lovely Lady bag for the lovely lady in your life…

All items available at White Stuff stores Nationwide, and Whitestuff.com