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.
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.
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.
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.
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!!!