Clothes Show Live – shopping,celebs…and more shopping!

I had my first experience of the Clothes Show Live last week, and I have to say I was quite impressed! Held each December in Birmingham’s LG Arena, the show attracts a mainly female audience who are attracted by the prospect of major shopping bargains from top brands and cult labels, beauty bargains to die for, and cute celebrity men..both models and mere mortals. They were not to be disappointed on any count.

In terms of shopping, there are beauty bargains galore. From Illamasqua selling their fantastic mascaras two for five pounds (yes I did say £5!),great goodie bags from Jelly Pong Pong, Bourjois and Rimmel for less than £10, and online exclusive products like Helene B and Kimberly Wyatt’s new mineral range BM beauty, cosmetic aficionados were truly spoilt for choice. My arms were literally filled with make-up goodie bags, with the amazing packaging of Jelly Pong Pong being a real favourite.

There were also clothing bargains to be found. High Street brand Internationale were selling perfect party wear using a buy one, get one three offer, which could save you pounds, whilst there were real designer bargains from Olivia Rubin and Dahlia, with Dahlia dresses from just £10, and Olivia Rubin styles that have been worn by the likes of Tulisa for less than £50. I also adored the vintage section which was a treasure trove of glorious beaded handbags, fabulous prom dresses and cute and festive Christmas jumpers, all of which were reasonably priced.

As a magpie by nature, I couldn’t resist the Tatty Devine store where I purchased two necklaces for £30, less than a third of the normal retail price. A Mikey stall had a glittering array of bangles for just £10…an incentive if needed to part company with yet more cash.

But the Clothes Show is about much more than shopping. The showpiece fashion show, presented by Grace Woodward and Birmingham’s adopted son George Lamb, was a truly spectacular spectacle. Called ‘A Night at the Department Store’, this was a fashion version of ‘A Night at the Museum’ with the models, aka the store mannequins,coming to life in a magical fashion. Each floor of the department store was represented in the show, and each floor seemed to contain a fair few scantily clad, and rather buff male models, which kept the mainly female audience happy, and quite frankly panting for more.

Floor Six of the Department floor was music, which cleverly tied in with a performance by the extremely tiny, and Gwen Stefani like, ex Pussycat Doll Kimberly Wyatt, with her new band Her Majesty and the Wolves. This was an energetic performance, and meeting Kimberly later I have to say she seems to be a real sweetie!

Kimberly wasn’t the only celebrity around. Arg and Maria from Towie were real crowd pleasers, it was Arg’s birthday and everyone seemed pleased to see him although a security person wicked whispered that he’d been a bit of a naughty boy on the day who kept disappearing!  Jeff Brazier and Lucien Laviscount were also popular.

Of course, the day wasn’t perfect, £8.50 for a cold jacket potato, coleslaw and a bottle of coke was excessive, whilst photo opportunities feel a little bit like cattle markets, but, all in all the LG Arena should be really proud of the Clothes Show Live experience, and I will definitely be penciling in the date for next year.

Why don’t you have a stylish September!

It’s here – the biggest month on the Fashion Calender has officially started, and to help you make sure that month goes with a bang, Fashion-Mommy has put together a list of the most happening events occurring in Fashion this month. So clear your diary to make space for a most enjoyable month.

      • The best fashion event in Birmingham‘s very busy calendar is almost here. Style Birmingham Live is  taking place from the 25th- 27th September, with a whole host of fashion shows, make-overs and events occurring at destinations all over the city. With George Lamb has presenter and with Caryn Franklin, Arianne Poole and Royston Blythe as attractions in Pavillions, this is sure to be a fantastic event.  If you  haven’t already got your tickets, snap some up quickly! (Style Birmingham LIVE 2011 tickets are £10, Gold VIP tickets are £30 – Book yours NOW at The Ticket Factory or at the THSH Box Office (Booking fees and postage charges apply). Tickets can be booked in person from the ICC Box Office, Centenary Square, Birmingham without a booking fee.)
      • September 8th sees the return  of Vogue’s Fashion Night Out. There will be events all over London, but if you are in Birmingham the hot ticket is the amazing new season’s launch fashion show at Harvey Nichols in the Mailbox. Get set for some amazing fashion from key designers including Gucci and Alexander McQueen. There will be a second show on Friday 9th.  Both evenings kick off at 6.30pm and tickets for Thursday September 8 and Friday September 9 cost £15, which is redeemable against purchases made on the night. Tickets are available from the store’s Personal Shopping department on 0121 616 6008.
      • Check out a couple of amazing exhibitions this month. The V&A is hosting Postmodernism: Style & Subversion 1970-1990 (art. music,fashion) from September 24th. The work of the late Corinne Day is celebrated at the Gimpel Fils Gallery. This is a must see exhibition of the controversial photographers early work for The Face, featuring arresting images of a young Kate Moss. (From September 1st).
      • There are a couple of fantastic fashion books out  this month. Patrick Lichfield – Perceptions features some amazing pictures of royalty and celebs from the Queen’s cousin. (Quadrille £30), whilst there is a new book about the immortal Coco in the new book ‘Intimate Chanel by Isabelle Fiemeyer(Out September 5th).
      • If you fancy yourself as a bit of a designer on the quiet, you could have a go at designing and making your own underwear. Vintage Amours Lingerie workshop takes place on `7th September in London. I think this sounds amazing fun!(Acava, London W1).
      • September 13th sees the grand opening of the latest Westfield shopping centre with the launch of Westfield Stratford..right on the doorstep of the Olympic Village!
      • Get set for London Fashion Week and Weekend 16th – 20th September. Always a totally exciting and vibrant week in the fashion calendar, and more important than ever now London has been proclaimed the most important city in Fashion! Enjoy!
      • Treat yourself to a bottle of Prada ‘Candy’. I frankly have no idea what it smells like, but the Art Deco style bottle is so gorgeous, who really cares!
    • Have a fabulous month fashionista’s everywhere!

Why don’t you have a fabulous August…

August already…where does the time go? The final true Summer Month is now upon us, and you may well send some of this month on a beach in a far-flung destination. But here are some more hints and tips for enjoying a truly stylish month.

    • Enjoy a Creme de la Mer radiant facial, followed by afternoon tea in Harvey Nichols in the Mailbox. This pamper session will cost £50and will be available throughout August.
    • Go see Captain America in order to steal style tips from the super-stylish Hayley Atwell with her incredible 1940s wardrobe. (released 29th July).
    • Go  see Glamour of the Gods – a selection of wonderful Hollywood portraits dating from the 1930s to the 1960s, which is currently showing at the National Portrait Gallery. Tickets cost £6 and Pre-booking is advisable.
    • If Glamour isn’t your thing, then dig out that vintage Black Sabbath  t-shirt and get yourself to the ‘Home of Metal’ exhibition that is currently showing at selected museums and venues throughout the Midlands.
    • Worship at the altar of the Rock and Roll Cobbler. Terry De Haviland is celebrating 50 years in shoe business with a pop-up exhibition in Selfridges, London. The shoes are amazing – read a review on this site.
    • Get yourself a day on the beach – I recommend my  favourite beach in Aberdovy – amazing white sand and the Dyfi Donkeys nearby! Perfect for a late Summer’s day.
    • Check out some of the most iconic shots in fashion in the book ‘Duffy’ (£45 ACC Editions). This features iconic images of Jean Shrimpton and Brigitte Bardot.
    • Buy and devour The September Issues – traditionally the most exciting and important issues in the fashion year. Look out for Kate Moss and her wedding shots, along with a Carrie Bradshaw style wedding shoot in US Vogue – highly anticipated.
    • Check  out the new Lucy in Disguise store. This August sees the opening of the new Lucy In Disguise store at 48 Lexington Street, London, W1. Go and have a look at the new fashion hotspot.
    • Make sure you have your ticket for Style in the City Birmingham, as this is the month you can get an upgrade for the gold ticket – complete with a meet and greet with George Lamb.
    • Molton Brown, Bullring are holding a second travel event in store on Saturday 6th August. Customers are offered complimentary hand and arm massages, and the store continues its travel offer, if you spend £40 or more in store you receive a  milk cleanse bar set worth £15 absolutely  free!

Have a fabulous Month folks!