Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Minimal Colour, Maximum Success.

It's rare to see a unique brand in such a small city like ours - I can only imagine how hard it is for designers to establish themselves within the industry and when based in a city that seems to only cater for the masses (Topshop and River Island dominate the only shopping centre), its incredible to see someone achieve success with their own designs. I absolutely adore Ksuko, which is based in Royal Arcade just off the High Street. I have the pleasure of counting Ria, the owner and creator of all the clothes in Ksuko as a close friend, and her pieces are fantastic.
Each design is completely handmade, from hand picked fabrics which Ria sources herself from various locations - the fabrics range from hand printed delicate silk, to grungey leather and PVC, and are stitched by Ria, each piece is unique - I have never seen her repeat a design or style, and each piece seems to outdo the last. I used to live in crazy prints and bright colours, but I have fallen in love with moody navy hues and black, and would like to think its all thanks to some of the pieces I have purchased from the shop.

I had the privilege of working for Ria last weekend, and took a couple of snaps whilst I was there. the layout compliments the garments perfectly - metal scaffolding poles act as the rails, whilst there is gorgeous stone work on the floor to add a harshness to the soft white walls.

I of course had to try a couple of pieces whilst i was there - this beautiful fur trimmed coat is light weight and has deep pockets, making it perfect for wearing with a night out and throughout autumn. I also fell in love with this clutch bag, which is a mix of soft leathers and suede, and would be a great investment piece - an oversized clutch is something that never goes out of style. And as I have previously said, each piece is handmade and one off, so these are extra special and you would never have to worry about someone else having the same outfit! There is also various jewellery pieces which have a gorgeous Japanese influence.
I adore Ria, I have so much respect for everything she does - she creates some amazing pieces and has worked hard to established herself in our fair city. She is also the proud owner/mummy to this cheeky little devil - Rumer, the French Bulldog.
If you ever do visit Leicester, take time out to explore the boutiques and independent shops outside the Highcross Shopping Centre - and make sure you take time to visit Ksuko in Royal Arcade. 


Sunday, 15 September 2013

Be Brave.

"There is so many faces to my personality. That is why I love fashion so much. It’s more like a different expression of myself. I don’t even know what I am.
For me, fashion is perfect, as it conceals a lot and I find it quite therapeutic. It helps me survive as i can make myself feel better hypothetically. I can hide my insecurities and think positively. Fashion is my mantra.”
- Anna Dello Russo.
Once, during an argument with someone, I was told that my red hair, tattoos and vintage clothes were a mere shield to hide my boring self behind - something I have fiercely denied ever since, but now I have come to think during recent drama that its true. People DO hide behind those things, almost like a jazzy updated version of medieval armour, protecting them from the insults and the dirty looks. It baffles me that still, after people fiercely battling for equal rights/free speech/individuality that every single day, there are comments and snide remarks on EVERYTHING and EVERYONE. You only have to look on popular Fashion Instagram accounts or Facebook pages to see hateful comments, and arguments between people who never have (and never will) met to see that everyone is pretty supportive of individuality until its a look/a person they don't like.

I guess what I'm trying to say, is that there's always going to be those people there, and they are hideous. They will forever make the snide remarks. It doesn't matter who you are, there is always going to be a problem with someone because of the way you dress, that you wear high street, that you wear couture, that you wear vintage, the style of your tattoos, the colour of your hair. But that's fine, let them do it. Be bolder, be braver, you will survive. Your clothes, your style, your jewellery - it will protect you.
I know it sounds ridiculous, I know I sound shallow. But fashion is an art form, and a pretty spectacular one at that. Its done a damn good job of saving people over the years. It's saved me, it can save you.
Be Brave.
Don't let the bastards get you down.

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

The September Issue.

The September Issue.

We are currently one week into August - does this scare anyone else? The year has flown by. Granted, it has been 8 months of work, end of friendships, start of relationships, heartbreak, tears and new ventures and the craziest time and I cannot believe its now only 4 months to Christmas (urgh). The weather is slowly starting to creep back into dull and dreary and its now time to start planning our inspiration for Septembers outfits. Of course, I will be wearing a real fur coat throughout winter, I love this beautiful Emilio Pucci jacket - the long shaggy style reminds me of the iconic Kate Moss, who I am always envious of - how does she manage to look so effortless in winter when us lot have runny noses and windswept hair?! I have a beautiful French black rabbit fur coat that I shall be wearing throughout the season which is similar to this Pucci one, my first real Vintage find all those years ago! Next up is a handbag - I have a Vivienne Westwood heart shaped crocodile skin bag which I carry everywhere - but this vintage Chanel bag is to die for - the classic quilted style is timeless and I am desperately searching for one like this! I don't think I shall ever be able to afford one though!
The beautiful tan suede ankle boots are by Vagabond - I love their shoes and the chunky low heel will be perfect to team with thick tights and dresses. As for dresses, I've been lusting after Mary Katrantzou prints for ages. However, I can't afford the prices! A great alternative is the designer Emma Cook, who does some gorgeous graphic prints like this mini dress. A silk like this is still light enough to keep that end of summer vibe, but can be layered up with chunky knits and thick tights to carry you through to autumn.
I can't let go of my favourites - Baroque, Alexander McQueen and Egyptian. These gorgeous McQueen embroidered pumps are just perfect. As is this beautiful Rosita Bonita Scarab necklace - I've recently discovered Rosita Bonita and I am totally head over heels with their stuff!
Pull all outfits together with a slick of plum purple lipstick.

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Overly Ambitious.


Having a very dreamy week this week - I had a long weekend in Whitby, North Yorkshire with Jazzy Jeff's Junk at The Great Seaside Vintage Fair and have been back working at Irregular Choice all week, and have spent this afternoon (after being tattooed) doing some internet window shopping, heres my ambitious wish list:

I bloody love a good kimono or cape. This gorgeous floral printed one is by Alexander McQueen, and is silk - I can only imagine the movement and softness of the fabric! Would look fantastic belted, teamed with black leggings (possibly the trusty American Apparel ones I live in) and this incredible Idriss Guelai Atelier bustier - almost plastic looking, with quite a harsh exterior - would clash perfectly against the soft silk (Although at over £1,000 I think its a little too out of my price range). It reminds me of the bondage trend which Louis Vuitton did so well a few seasons ago (who could forget Kate Moss striding down the catwalk smoking in those hooker boots?)
I recently purchased the most amazing tapestry buffalo platforms from ASOS, but spotted these 'Hyper' platforms online and fell in love! A snip at £75, they echo the grungey yet indie look of Jeffery Campbell but for a fraction of the price! The chunky wedge adds a harder look to the overall shoe, and would add a great twist to an otherwise 'regular' outfit.
Finally, these Susan Caplan Vintage Chanel earrings are just precious - what self confessed fashion lover wouldn't want some vintage Chanel in their wardrobe? I especially love the droplet style of these pieces, its almost like gold coins from the streets of Paris, but with a posh French twist.

My theory is, its better to be overly ambitious than just settling for whatever happens, so hopefully one day all of these beautiful pieces (As well as many more) shall be being worn by me, strutting down Leicester high street.
Keep dreaming Harriet...

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

French Summer

I've just received shots from my shoot with Jazzy Jeff's Junk that me and my photographer Joe Vozza did at the beautiful Café Bruxelles in Leicester last week. I chose the venue because of its gorgeous décor, it has a roof like the one in Beauty and The Beast and has an incredible French vibe, which I thought would work perfectly with the crazy 1980s clothes I was using. The clash between the smart French style and the bright and quite garish clothes works well, and in the final edited pieces looks wonderful.
I used a gorgeous Bulgarian model called Stassy, who was so natural and poised in front of the camera - she was a pleasure to work with, and as you can see from the shots, photographs beautifully!

Here are some of my favourite shots from the shoot, the rest can be viewed here. I've been sourcing lots of crazy prints lately - everything from 1980s Club Tropicana style to 90s Grunge. The final outfits are a mix of classy and crazy - sometimes adding a clashing print adds a twist to something that would usually be considered 'safe'. Summer has always been the best season to experiment in, so I chose lots of jumpsuits, light silk blouses and maxi skirts and dresses - most of which can be toned down with some nude flats and minimal jewellery for a daytime look, or maxed out with chunky heels and lots of decadent jewellery for evenings out.

Photography: Joe Vozza.
Styling by Myself.
Hair by Mikey Palmer.

Monday, 10 June 2013

Styling, Sequins & Shoes.

As you know, Jazzy Jeff's Junk had a photo shoot with Labelled Magazine a few months ago, shot by Rococo Imaging. I styled and provided all the clothes for the shoot, which is being featured in Labelled Magazine later this month. I've received some of the shots from the photographers and they are beautiful, really well shot and edited (the styling isn't too bad either!).

Here are a few of my favourite shots from the shoot. We used the beautiful Taps Bar in Leicester - a cosy basement with lots of cubby holes and distressed walls, which I think worked really well with the colours and patterns of the clothes. I'm really excited to see them in glossy print! The models were fantastic and hopefully I shall be working with them again on further shoots. All the clothes in the shoot will be available on the facebook page as soon as the photos are published.

In other news, I've been working a lot on the online side of Tinfish/Irregular Choice - which involves lots of trying on the new shoes! Perks of the job and all that. Here are my favourites from Irregular Choice, called Slam Dunk. They have pigs on. And you can see my new foot tattoo which i'm in love with, and had it shaded and coloured later that day!

Stay Jazzy. H x

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Smooth Styling: Leicester's Finest.

If your a true Leicester resident you will know about Kasbah Piercing & Tattoos on Silver Street. I first became familiar when I worked at Goldrush Vintage in Malcom Arcade around 3 years ago - Kasbah was situated opposite and since then, every piercing has been done by Charlie, and every tattoo by Che - and I shall continue to do so as long as i'm in Leicester!

Charlie and me bonded over a mutual love over Kasabian and mad clothes, and has been one of my closest friends ever since. He works SO hard at Kasbah (a family business) and also on his acting - and I am SO proud to say he debuted his role in HOLLYOAKS a few weeks ago! Part of the new Roscoe Family, he plays Freddie, and already has made a brilliant impression on every Hollyoaks fan I have met - he really deserves it, because bloody hell he has worked hard for it!

Now I work as a freelance stylist, i'm pretty chuffed to say that I've styled one of Leicester's finest - here's a snap from The British Soap Awards of Charlie (top right) and his on screen family. His suit is, of course, Alexander McQueen, styled with accessories from Jazzy Jeff's Junk. Hopefully he will keep me in mind for more of his appearances (well he best bloody do anyway)

And a little photo of me and him taken today in the glorious Leicester sunshine.
I'm wearing these American Apparel leggings to death at the moment, and teamed it with a handmade dress from Ksuko Clothing in Royal Arcade, Leicester.
If your a Hollyoaks fan (and even if you aren't) you can catch it on Channel 4/E4 every week day. Charlie is also featuring in the second Kick Ass film which is out this summer!
So proud of this guy.
LSF Charlie! Love H x