Adele – 2011 Cover Queen.

The undoubted breakout star of 2011 has been Adele.  Musically she has dominated both the album and singles charts, and she has provided a beautiful role model for those girls who do not have a size 10 figure. And  what has been amazing for a girl who has a size 16 figure, and jokes that she ought to be the face of ‘full fat cola’ is that she has  been embraced by the Fashion Press and has become one of the hottest cover girls of 2011,  culminating this month with the cover of Vogue’s October Issue.

Adele has graced the covers of numerous magazines this year, Glamour, US and Canadian Elle, Rolling Stone, Q, Look, More, and So Fabulous  are just some of the magazines that have featured Adele’s brand of glossy haired, glowing skinned beauty. She was praised in Vogue has having a type of Catherine Deneuve beauty and has seen the 1960s styling becoming a key beauty trend, with many stars embracing her bouffant style hairstyle.


Of course, the pictures of Adele that have been used haven’t been without controversy, mainly due to the fact that they have focused on her face rather than any full length shots that have shown off her curvy, plus-sized figure. I personally  think this is nonsense that just detracts from the fact that there is now a plus  sized girl making covers worldwide. Because, lets face it, we all know exactly what Adele looks like,  we know she isn’t Cheryl Cole skinny, but she is beautiful, and she is there, on major magazine covers. We don’t forget what she  looks like because we can’t see her in full. There is a story that  in 1955, whilst filming the movie ‘Bus Stop’, there was concern that a shot of Don Murray cut off the top of  his head. Producers were worried about this, but Marilyn Monroe,in her wisdom,  pointed out that they shouldn’t really be worried, it had already been established that Dom  Murray had a top to his head, audiences wouldn’t be worried. This is how I feel about these pictures. We know Adele is curvy, we don’t need to see it in every photograph of her.

It is such a positive step putting Adele on  magazine covers, respecting her beauty and her success. I really hope that she continues her reign over the charts and her role as a magazine cover girl for a long time to come.

Harvey Nichols celebrates Fashion’s Night Out in Style.

Harvey Nichols new season fashion shows are always a hot ticket in Birmingham.They are renowned for amazing staging, super style…and a celeb of two, all enjoying the complimentary Champagne on offer. This Thursday and Friday will see The Midlands most fashionable folks taking their places on the front row for the unveiling of the Autumn/winter 2011 collections.

Thursday September 8th is of course the date for Vogue’sFashion’s night Out‘, a massive  important date on the Fashion calendar. Across the globe, top designers, stores  and stylists will be taking part in a series of fashion events, launches and promotions. To coincide with the hundreds of style events planned, Harvey Nichols is staging one of our two new season fashion shows on the same night.

With names like Dolce and Gabbana, Gucci and Diane Von Furstenberg on the menu, along with the legendary, covetable Louboutin heels, the show promises a whole range of gorgeous looks to savour. With the show sponsored by Land Rover, who will be launching the new Range Rover Evoque at the events, this is sure to be a glamorous and enjoyable evening not to be missed by anyone with an interest in true style.

“All the talk at the moment is about who is doing what for Vogue’s FNO, so we are delighted to bring this great event back to the city,” says  Harvey Nichols General Manager Kevin Breese. “This international fashion extravaganza is supported all over the world, from Manhattan to Milan and Atlanta to Australia. It is great news that Birmingham too is heavily involved in such an important date on the world’s fashion calendar.”

Both evenings will kick off at 6.30pm and tickets 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. See you there!

Creativity on the Catwalk – Fashion,Embroidery and stitch at the NEC

I had a fantastic time on Friday at the Fashion, embroidery and Stitch show at Birmingham NEC. This was a show dedicated to all things fashion and design, and without doubt the high point was an inspiring fashion show entitled ‘Creativity on the Catwalk’. Here are some of the highlights of that show.

Butterick/McCall’s/Vogue Patterns

Using the best designs from sewing patterns in a range of beautiful metallic tinged colours, this collection featured an array of flirty Prom style dresses in many different styles. There were silhouettes that referenced the 1950s and 1960s, with both full skirts and shift dress styles. Loved the use of raw silk and Vivienne Westwood style strapless bodices.


Gill Arnold – deconstructing Chanel

Gill Arnold is a dress-maker extraordinaire, offering training in all aspects of clothes construction. Her collection was a celebration of glamour, in eye-popping reds. There were Chanel style jackets, jersey dresses and a Halston style red dress that was just stunning. Gill also gave a talk at her stand that showed how the classic Chanel boxy tweed jacket is constructed, complete with a little bit of Chanel design history for interested fashionista’s.

Fabrics Galore – Royal wedding fever.

Fabrics galore showcased their Kitsch range of new fabrics that are a celebration of the nuptials of Kate Middleton and Prince William. These cotton fabrics include a range of Royal insignia and crowns. The models also came on stage bedecked in cute bunting, perfect for a street party.

Coats Crafts Amy Butler – Soul Blossoms

US designer Amy Butler’s fantastic new range of prints and patterns from her Soul Blossoms collection was a highlight for me. Showcased to the sounds of ‘Magical Mystery Tour’ by The Beatles, this was a psychedelic collection that reflected the inspiration of travelling through India. The waterproof jackets and tunic style dresses were perfect for Summer festivals.

Lizzie Henderson – The Creative Textile Route

Fresh from success at the Clothes Show Live 2010, Lizzie Henderson had decided to take the creative textile route. This collection was reminiscent of Westwood, Galliano and McQueen,with checked and plaid fabrics, bustles, English tweeds and flat caps. There were Westwood style crowns adorning capes modelled by a Kate Middleton lookalike. There was also a touch of the  New Romantics in the hooped skirt.

Warwickshire College Production Theatre – Romance and Turrets.

Another team fresh from Clothes Show Live were the students of Warwickshire college Production Theatre under the auspices of tutor Tracy Bridger. There collection was based on the twin themes of Romeo and Juliet and the majestic Warwick Castle. There were Black Swanesque tulle dresses and Gaultier style corsets. There was a beautiful blue/green strapless dress that was just beautiful.

University of Wolverhampton – a 1001 inspirations!

The flamboyant collection produced by the students of Wolverhampton University drew on many inspirations from Russian Dolls, wildlife and Urban chaos.There were glorious orange prints, Lady Gaga style skirts and Avant Garde designs. This was a collection full of clashing colours and styles.

University of Cumbria – distressed denim and corsetry

This collection had lots of distressed denim with patchwork and industrial style customisation.  Artists Julie Tristam, famous for the pink bra dress on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square, and Ashley Smith were involved in this collection, which also included Isabella Blow style puff-ball dresses and floppy hats.

Grange Academy – A Midsummer Night’s dream

Working with an Artist in Residence, Heather Kubachick, the students from Grange Academy created costumes with a dreamy woodland theme.  Using leaves and petals in net and voile fabric, they have created a floaty, colourful collection that was very pretty.