Saturday, April 30, 2011

Silver shoes, Paris

Model off duty, Volvo Fashion Week, Moscow

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Julia Vydolob - London Fashion Week

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Oh Mr Raaaabbit! Palais de Tokyo, Paris

Doesn't her outfit make you think of Alice in Wonderland? There is something about the combination of colours in this outfit that I just love.

Valentina, Gostiny Dvor, Moscow

This outfit is so complex and quite hard to pull-off. When wearing such a statement suit not many would dare accessorise but in my opinion Valentina has managed to pull-off this bold look beautifully!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Fashion Photographer, Paris

Monday, April 25, 2011

Smile! Palais de Tokyo, Paris

Maria, Ilyinka Street, Moscow

Sunday, April 24, 2011

A rainy day in London...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Christina Cardona, New York

Christina Cardona of Trop Rouge blog

Friday, April 22, 2011

Liliya and the braid, Moscow

Note Liliya's amazing hairdo - it is basically like a scarf made of her hair... the braid does not have a beginning or an end, it loops around.

Blogger style - Paris Fashion Week

It is always a challenge for a street style blogger to dress well. In fact, it is more of a compromise than a challenge. You are out shooting for about 5-6 hours straight and what you are wearing better be comfortable. I think this young lady has manage to strike a balance and looks super cool while being warm and comfortable.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The 70's are coming! (New York)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Frances - Somerset House, London

Frances from happy-because

Shapovalova AW2011, Volvo Fashion Week

I feel like I need to clarify at this stage that the reason that most of my reviews from Volvo Fashion Week are positive is because my approach not only to reviews but to blogging in general is "if you don't have anything nice to say, then don't say anything". Having said that, there are some designers whose work I like and follow but whose particular collection may have, in my view, had some 'room for improvement'. In those cases, I voice my opinion loud and clear. To put it in perspective - I attended over 30 catwalk shows at Volvo Fashion Week and only the very few shows that I liked actually ended up on my blog. I just do not see the point in blasting a collection that I do not have the slightest interest in.

So now that I got that out of the way, I want to share another one of the shows from Volvo FW that I actually liked.

Shapovalova is a young brand that is only 2 years old and is a brainchild of Antonina Shapovalova who, at her tender age of 23, has presented her fourth collection at the VFW. In Russia her brand is a cause for varied sentiments as the brand's PR powerhouse manages to attract the attention of not only Russian pop stars and socialites but also the politicians which, lets face it, is strange even on a good day. Shapovalova's web-site boasts a story about how the then future president of Russia, Dmitri Medvedev, bought one of the t-shirts and how various other Russian political figures own Shapovalova's propaganda t-shirts.

Whatever the sentiment, I had no idea about it until after the show when I, impressed by what had just seen, went on to do some digging on the designer.

I liked Shapovalova's AW2011 collection for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I think it was very well thought through, with a consistent theme throughout the collection. The collection was called "Airports. Pilots. Planes". What can I say? The catwalk was decorated as an airport runway with deep blue skies in the background. The music was perfectly matched - something that is rare for Russian designers who generally don't seem to think it's necessary to employ a production team who ensure that the whole show 'flows'. Shapovalova obviously had the luxury of having a stylist and a production team who did a brilliant job - didn't take the attention away from the clothes but rather made sure the clothes are complemented by the surroundings. The Dandy Warhols' The Last High was a good choice of soundtrack.

Then there were the clothes... Colour. Lots of nice colour. Not the citrusy summer colour but the deeper shades of  green, blue and burgundy dominated. The clothes were well-tailored, especially the menswear pieces, and well accessorised with bags, belts and leather halters. The halters, as I discovered a bit later on, were very similar to those of Marios Schwab. I very much liked that Shapovalova was bold with the colour in her menswear pieces. I am not entirely sure about the practicality of this collection for a Russian winter but the clothes sure do look great!

Here some photos (all photos and editing by me):

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

More backstage at Volvo Fashion Week

Monday, April 18, 2011

Konstantin Gayday AW2011

This show was probably the highlight of the Volvo Fashion Week for me. Again, not knowing anything about the designer meant that I had zero expectations and at the beginning I was a little confused by the variety of colourful tights, especially on boys. However, it would have to be the headpieces that brought it back for me. I never ever in a hundred years could have imagined that Russian theme can be so tastefully worked into what otherwise was a very modern and at times minimalistic collection. I have most certainly never seen it done successfully before and this was an absolute show stealer! My favourite look is the white headpiece worn with the white faux fur jacket and black sequence leggings.

In terms of the actual clothes I felt that the collection was strong with just enough sequence detailing to keep it exciting but without crossing over to the 'euro-trash' side. I must admit, I still do not get the leggings on boys at the beginning though...

Joanna Hillman, NYFW

Sunday, April 17, 2011

In the business of fashion...

Flicking through the pages of the March issue of W magazine, I came across the Editor's Letter (interestingly I found it on page 138 of the magazine… at first I thought I mistakenly purchased an ad catalogue). 

In his letter Stefano Tonchi was talking about the Oscars and reminiscing about "this time last year". At this point it might be easier if I just include the excerpt from the letter to help me get my point across:

"Last year at this time, my friend Tom Ford's directorial debut, A Single Man, was nominated for a slew of awards, including an Oscar. It was thrilling, but when I heard him talk about how happy he was that he'd finally accomplished something truly artistic, I was surprised. He had already accomplished a great deal during his many years in fashion. In creating beautiful clothes and the alluring imagery around them, he deeply influenced the way we look at the world. Doesn't that qualify as artistry."

Stefano then went on to say that over the course of his career he had met many talented journalists with the same "inferiority complex", who were often uncomfortable admitting they write about fashion and felt the need to make excuses and justifications. 

Does Stefano have a point? And if so, where does this inferiority complex come from?

I started thinking about all the people in the fashion industry that I had met in the last year since my blog started taking a more 'fashiony' direction.

The forefront of fashion bloggers has more lawyers and ex-finance professionals than you might expect. And chatting to some of them a pattern emerges - their 'real life' friends and ex-colleagues often do not understand "the whole blogging thing".

I will take it a step further and say that not only do they not understand it, in 99% of the cases they probably also do not take it seriously. 

As I write this I get more and more perplexed about the question of why does fashion not count as a serious career? Is it because it does not pay well? Or is it just the bloggers who are not taken seriously because blogging is such a new concept?

I don't know the answer to those questions but I know that for those coming from a conservative industries like law, finance and medicine, people in the fashion industry definitely have certain stereotypes attached to them.

In my case, the "inferiority complex" that Stefano was talking about is definitely there. Most of my friends, but the closest ones, don't even know that I have a blog or an SLR camera for that matter. When I was shooting street style in London's Brick Lane a few weeks ago with a fellow blogger and ran into a 'real life' friend, I was slightly embarrassed and shy to explain what the hell I was doing hanging around Brick Lane with a huge camera and stalking people. 

My colleagues at work are also blissfully unaware of my parallel life. God forbid they find out that all those trips to friends' 30th birthdays in NYC, friends visiting from Australia and trips to visit family in Russia actually magically coincide with fashion weeks in NYC, London, Paris and Moscow. 

I prefer not to use my real name most of time in case current or potential employers or clients happen to Google me. Paranoid much? May be.

The thing is, when you spend years and years studying and then persistently working your way up the corporate ladder, you anticipate more than a question mark on people's faces when they find out that in fact all those years were wasted and that in my ideal world I would be a freelance photographer, eating beans most of the time cos you don't know where the next paycheck is coming from. 

I'm really lucky that my family is very supportive of my hobby and I'm pretty sure my mum is slowly coming to terms with the idea that I would rather spend 6 hours a day in the cold at NYFW looking for people to photograph then jump through hoops at an interview for a fancy job at a bank. 

What still remains unclear though is why do the actual bona fide fashion journalists have that inferiority complex? Fashion is multi-billion dollar industry, a pop culture, a business, an art form and yet so many people both inside and outside the industry struggle to take it seriously. I think may be it is because fashion is an indulgence, it something that makes you feel good about yourself, something that is daring and that so many don't understand and are intimidated by. Because fashion is so subjective it can be more difficult to achieve and accomplish within the field of fashion than any other. There will always be people who like what you do and those who don't. 

I'm most definitely looking forward to 'coming out of the fashion closet' but I am not quite ready for it just yet… :)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Alexandra (Sasha) Boyarskaya, Paris

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Model off duty - after Hermes show, Paris

Birds of a Feather - Anita, Moscow

Monday, April 11, 2011

Interview with Ekaterina Tsar'kova - Fashion Journalist, Moscow

Katya is wearing:
Yellow coat by Natalia Kolykhalova  StudioNK -
Silk dress by Alina Assi -

Grey bolero by Natasha Drigant -
Blue bag and matching bracelet by - Oksana Shapova, Lavrent -

As promised, the second interview from my trip to Moscow. For my second interview, I really wanted someone who knows and understands Russian fashion and was prepared to share some of their personal style with us.

In the last couple of years  the term 'fashion journalist' has mutated and can be used to describe anyone from bona fide fashion critic, to blogger, to fashionista who does not do much in life but needs to feel accomplished. 

Ekaterina Tsarkova (Katya) is a fashion journalist in a real, traditional sense of the word. She writes, she criticises, she is opinionated, she can make her audience angry and all of those things make her good at what she does.

Currently Katya writes for her own project -, as well as a number of paper and online publications including and

I came across Katya's blog through an article about her on one of the Russian web-sites and straight away her blog struck me as punchy, to the point and as having a distinct lack of sugarcoating. To put it in perspective for my non-Russian readers, the way the fashion industry works in Russia can often be quite primitive. For example, it is not unusual that a "constructive criticism" in reviews can lead to some closed doors and withdrawals of invitations to shows that you would otherwise be welcome at. In that sense, anyone who wants to be a fashion critic better grow some thick skin as honest opinions are not always welcome. 

Katya is honest. Consequently, she has had a few doors slammed in her face but she refuses to compromise her journalistic integrity and pushes on. I honestly believe that it is through people like Katya that the change from "primitive" to "real" can actually take place in the fashion industry in Russia. 

I was very pleased that Katya agreed to do an interview with me because her main focus is on Russian designers and she has a great understanding of where the Russian fashion industry is heading. Why do I care? I guess because I know that there are people in Russia who know what they are talking about when it comes to fashion but often they get lost in the herd of euro-trash loving masses. And whilst the industry is very much in its infancy, from what I saw at Volvo Fashion Week, there is a new breed of talented designers that are trying to find their feet and survive in this tough and ever-changing environment. 

State of Sunday (SoS): How did you get interested in fashion?

Katya: My dad used to produce a TV show about fashion back in the 90's and I used follow him around and remember being fascinated by it all. Originally I wanted to be a fashion designer and even studied fashion and textile at university. As part of my studies I wrote a research essay about Dolce & Gabbana. I found the topic quite interesting and really wanted to share my work with a wider audience. This was back in 2003 when the concept of blogging did not exist in Russia so I set up a website to share my thoughts on fashion and start a dialogue with my readers. My aim was to show fashion as accessible and understandable as opposed to elitist and accessible to only the privileged few.

SoS: Do you prefer Russian designers to foreign ones?

Katya: I do not separate designers into 'foreign' or 'russian'. Style is style and if something looks appealing to the eye and I like it, I do not care where the designer is from - it is the final product that matters. Although, when it comes to writing about them, I do like working with Russian designers as they are more accessible (for obvious reasons) and I can actually interview them and get to know their work.

SoS: Who are your favourite Russian designers?

Katya: I like Lena Vasilieva. Although I found her last collection a bit too safe and lacking designer's signature, I think she is talented and educated - she knows a lot about techniques, fabrics and a she adopts interesting concepts. For instance, she is familiar with some amazing hand-making techniques. The trouble is, she does not use a lot of those techniques in her collections as she seems to be torn between making sellable clothes and making unique clothes. Other designers that I like are Natasha Drigant, Oleg Birykov and Kirill Gasilin.

SoS: What do you have to say about the state of the fashion industry in Russia at the moment?

Katya: Unfortunately, I do not think the industry is developing as much as it should, if at all! There is currently no support from the Government. We do not have a body similar to the British Fashion Council who would provide that much needed support and representation. Also, the mentality needs to change. Currently Russian designers are too expensive which is not justified as there is no brand loyalty and consumers have not been trained to buy Russian brands. 

SoS: So what do you think needs to change?

Katya: I think the designers need to be more open to working with the press and the media, although we have seen a significant improvement in this area in the last couple of years. Also, the designers should be more open to constructive criticism as that is the way to grow and develop. I think designers compromise their creativity  by concentrating too much on seeking approval from their audiences.

SoS: Who are your favourite foreign designers?

Katya: John Galliano and Jean Paul Gaultier for inspiration, Donna Karan for practicality. I also quite like Haider Ackermann.

SoS: How do you feel about the recent Galliano incident?

Katya: I feel sorry for him and it is a shame but by the same token as a public figure he should have been more careful with his choice of words. I also think there is an element of someone trying to benefit from all the publicity surrounding the incident.

SoS: What Russian magazines do you like?

Katya: L'Officiel and Harper's Bazaar are probably my favourite fashion glossies at the moment.

SoS: What would be your ideal career path?

Katya: [laughing] editor-in-chief of course!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Shoreditch Sundays: Jennifer & the flowers

One of the things I love about being a street style blogger is that you can come up to complete strangers and strike up a conversation. At first I noticed the flowers and the boots. Then saw the rest of the outfit and thought it worked quite well with that oversized bag and asymmetric coat. As I learnt in the process, Jennifer is an assistant buyer at Asos and also has her personal style blog ( )

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Backstage - Monet Hair Collection

Monet Hair Collection was a show by one of the sponsors of Volvo Fashion Week, who were responsible for the hairdos at all the shows throughout the week. It was the last show of day three and was for fun more than anything else. The hairdressers wanted to show-off their crazy hair creations and the models were wearing corsets and feathers to match the eccentric hairstyles.  I didn't stay for the show as I did not think it was really fashion related but as I was leaving the venue I saw some of the models hustling at the backstage entrance. I couldn't help myself -  the show made for great backstage snapshots!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Interview with Dima Shabalin - Stylist, Moscow

During my trip to Moscow, I wanted to do a variety of things, so apart from street style and show reviews, I decided to also do a couple of features on Moscow bloggers. The idea being that Russian blogging community is not well (if at all) represented in the global blogging arena. When we speak of London we think of Facehunter, New York - The Sartorialist, Paris - Garance Dore, but when speak of Moscow… no one really comes to mind. So I decided to use this visit as an opportunity to bring some exposure to Moscow bloggers and the "up-and-comers" of the fashion industry. There are two interviews I did during my time there. The first one you will find below and the second one will follow very shortly. The interviews were done in Russian and I took the liberty to translate and hopefully I did my interviewees justice. 

You may remember this young man, Dima, from my previous post a couple of days ago. Well this time I randomly ran into him whilst scouting for some trendy people in Kamergersky Pereulok which, I was told, is a good destination for street style scouting. We started chatting about fashion, the fashion week and blogging.. and somehow I convinced Dima to do a short interview for me.

There is a line in an old Russian movie which says that Moscow is like a big lottery. Indeed, it seems that the right place, right time and right people combination can make you go a long way. Moscow can be extremely pretentious and bitchy but one thing is true - it is a world of opportunities that is open to young people more than anywhere else. In Moscow people don't care if you do not have experience or you are young - if you prove that you can do it, they will take you seriously.

Dima is only 17 but is already establishing himself as a stylist in his own right. I also can't help but mention how impressed I was by his maturity both generally and in the fashion industry sense. He is currently studying journalism at MGU (Moscow State University) and has assisted and worked with editors at Fashion Collection and L'Officiel (Russian glossies). He has also worked for an online publication Fashion24 and does freelance styling.

State of Sunday (SoS): When did you get interested in Fashion?

Dima Shabalin (Dima): I have always been interested in fashion but I guess the point when I realised I wanted to make it my career was when I saw Lady Gaga wearing those McQueen shoes in her Bad Romance video. They were like nothing I have ever seen and since then I spent a lot of time researching and studying Alexander McQueen's style, vision and aesthetics.

SoS: So after you decided you wanted to work in fashion how did you find your way into the industry? Was it hard to break into?

Dima: I guess I was really lucky. I met a stylist and a Vogue Russia blogger, Vitali Kozak at a party, then shortly after I met one of  the editors at L'Officiel Russia, followed by 
a Russian designer - Gosha Rubchinsky. From thereon it all happened quite quickly and I started assisting at L'Officiel and working as a freelance stylist at a number of other online and published magazines.

SoS: Who are your favourite designers and who inspires you?

Dima: Alexander McQueen is my favourite designer. I also really like Gareth Pugh and Thierry Mugler. Other people who I find really inspirational are Daphne Guinness and the late Isabella Blow. In fact, I am currently working on an editorial piece which is based around Isabella Blow and her style.

SoS: So how you do you feel about Sarah Burton stepping into the role of the leading lady at Alexander McQueen?

Dima: I think Sarah Burton is very bright. She studied and experienced McQueen's style and approach when he was still alive and she knows it well. I think she will be great at keeping the essence of the brand. However, Alexander McQueen was a visionary, he was always ahead of fashion and will be impossible to match. His Plato's Antlantis show was one of the most amazing shows and collections in fashion both today, tomorrow and years to come. Sarah Burton is great at adapting McQueens past ideas and making them relevant whilst keeping the femininity. Unfortunately though I think Sarah Burton is currently moving in a loop rather than moving forward, she is recycling great ideas but is not coming up with anything truly McQueen genius.

SoS: What do you think of other great designers like Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel or Marc Jacobs for LV?

Dima: To be completely honest, sometimes I don't completely understand Karl Lagerfeld's vision. At times, I feel like he's gone completely mad. Some of his designs are great but others look like they would've been relevant about 10 years ago but perhaps not today. Marc Jacobs is extremely talented and is doing great things but at times I find his pret-a-porter designs a bit over-the-top.

SoS: What are you favourite designers to use in editorials?

Dima: Out of foreign designers I like using McQueen, Oscar de la Renta and Valentino. Out of Russian designers my preference would probably be Kirill Gasilin.

SoS: What do you think about the AW2011 trends? A lot of designers showed fur in their collections which is always a bit controversial.

Dima: I think fashion is moving very fast these days and by the time we are in winter 2011, fashionistas will be looking for next big thing. I don't mind fur. Although I quite like the faux fur elements that Vika Gazinskaya used in her AW2011 collection.

SoS: You mentioned Vika Gazinskaya, who is one of the favourites for street style bloggers around the world with her often eccentric outfits at various fashion weeks, she is almost a flag for Russian fashion in the global arena. What do you think of other Russian designers?

Dima: Unfortunately, most Russian designers do not have the "wow" factor. The looks are well put together, the shows are a well-organised but it is not art. A lot of Russian designers copy what was done by European designers, sometimes even going as far as a few seasons back. They are very much about creating something that sells and forget the essence of fashion in the process. You can walk in and buy those things in a store, but there is no excitement. I don't think that this is likely to change any time soon either, definitely not in the next 5 years.

SoS: As a stylist, do you like using Russian designers or do you prefer to stick with European and American ones? 

Dima: Russian designers have the wrong 'format' so stylist prefer to stick with European designers. Also the quality versus price ratio is not great.

SoS: So what needs to change? Or what do you think is missing in the fashion industry in Russia?

Dima: I don't think there are enough fashion savvy people in the Russian fashion industry currently. There are very few critics who know what they are talking about and even they at times get it wrong. Designers are not very smart in their approach to the business of fashion. They need to realise that you are not making a collection so that you can invite your friends to model and then have a party afterwards - a collection is meant to be relevant, sellable and creative. It is all too tribal at the moment and until some smart and impartial people come along, there will be no fashion industry as such in Russia.

SoS: What are you plans for the future?

Dima: My ideal career path would be to become an editor at a magazine but I am also open to exploring new ideas and recently started getting involved in design. A friend of mine is a stylist and she loves interesting and quirky accessories so I made her a crown that she would be able to use in her shoots. She loved it and so I made a few more in different materials - fabric, plastic. We even wore them out to a party and people seemed to love them. I will be using one of my designs in the Isabella Blow editorial in the May issue of Fashion Collection. 

Dima's blog: 
photos courtesy of Dima Shabalin

Natasha Drigant AW2011 - Volvo Fashion Week Moscow

Natasha Drigant is what I would call a safe and solid brand. Natasha has been showing two collections per year since 1999 which is rare in Russia as the fashion industry is very much in its infancy and it is not uncommon for designers to struggle with funding two collections per year on top of managing to sell the clothes. Natasha Drigant most certainly sells, probably due to the practicality and understandability of the clothes. The AW2011 collection was presented at Volvo Fashion Week. For me the highlight of the collection would have to be the dresses with the folds (I guess what one would call them?!) on the hips, as well as the clean line coats (especially the black leather one). The clothes were most certainly practical but only a couple of items truly stood out from the crowd.

(photos and editing by me)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Katya - Iliynka Street, Moscow

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Alena - Volvo Fashion Week 2011

Alena Molchanova - Moscow based stylist and brand manager

Monday, April 4, 2011

What happens at Volvo Fashion Week in Moscow?

My very first time at Volvo Fashion Week in Moscow and I am as happy as a kid in a candy store! I was excited about coming to Moscow for this event, but I also had my reservations. Firstly, it was cold in Moscow   (well compared to London anyway) and I was not looking forward to hanging around in the cold all day and not feeling my fingers or my toes. Secondly, having never shot Moscow street style or not really knowing Russian designers, I did not know what to expect. Works out, fashion events are adaptable to weather and stylish people are stylish regardless of where they live!

Volvo Fashion Week in Moscow (I keep saying the full name because, weirdly enough, there is another fashion week running in Moscow concurrently) is set at the wonderful Gostiny Dvor venue. It is basically a huge exhibition hall but also happens to be beautiful inside with lots of natural light as the entire roof is made of glass. Two tents are set up inside for the catwalk shows, there is a 'technical area' which is basically an atrium where hair is done, models hang out and castings take place; and there is the 'public' area which is where all the fun begins... Basically, I understand the Russian approach to be as "if it is not enjoyable then why bother??" which I guess makes sense. Unlike the heavyweight fashion weeks in NY, Paris, London and Milan that are all business-buyers-sellers-watch-and-get out type events, the Moscow counterpart is very much come-hang-have a champagne-and-watch some fashion type event. Allow me to elaborate. There is a full-on bar with a DJ set up in the middle of the whole thing. You can reserve a table, have your  Veuve and drink it too. Right next to the bar there are the latest Volvo cars in bright red being shown off. Behind the bar is a hair studio where you can get your hair done whilst having another glass of champagne. And of course there is the VIP waiting room, which is for those people who are kind of a big deal and they prefer to drink their Veuve with other more privileged fashion individuals. 

For me personally the highlight of the venue was the cloak room where you could also get a locker and dump all your stuff there instead of lugging it with you all day. I was also pleasantly surprised by the organisation of the event and the fact that the PR people responsible for organising and registering the media remember most of the bloggers and photographers by name. Moscow Fashion weeks (lucky for me this season :) are yet to reach the point where there are hundreds of fashion bloggers and photographers hanging around trying to shoot people so doing street style here is much easier here and more enjoyable as people who attend the shows are not being mobbed at the entrance.

The catwalk shows are running back to back so getting to all the shows whilst trying to shoot street style in the meantime makes lunch/coffee breaks near impossible - something that ALL fashion weeks have in common! 

Here are some photos from the venue:

Main hall
Backstage atrium
The bar

Olga Deffi AW2011 - Volvo Fashion Week Moscow

Olga Deffi was a hit'n'miss for me personally. Some looks were wearable and practical and some were plain boring. I liked the hoods and the separate sleeves. The knee-high boots had a question mark in my books as I did not expect to see them in AW2011 since we've already been wearing them for the last six months. I thought some fabrics were a bit of a let down as they looked cheap and did not look good in the catwalk spotlight. I think I'm neither here nor there with this collection - some pieces were fine but nothing that popped out and made a crazy impression. My favourite look would have to be the black wool dress with a pleather stripe running along the front and back. I have picked out nineteen of the best looks from the collection (all photos by me):

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Natalya Kolykhalova AW2011 - Review

This one was a cat in the bag for me! Not knowing anything about the designer, I did not have any expectations whatsoever but she surprised me. An elegant collection with a 70's and Frenchy flair - nice to know that Russian designers are in tune with the global fashion trends. The retro sunglasses and suede gloves added a nice finishing touch. Lots of flowing fabrics and gorgeous cuts along with sheer elements and embroidery. I think sheer can be very difficult to pull off but Natalya has managed it perfectly. I tried to take some detail shots so you can fully apprehend the intricate detail of the pieces.

The evening gowns where simply stunning and the photos really do not do them justice - sexy without being vulgar.

Overall, I would not say that Kolykhalova exhibited any extreme originality in her collection but it definitely had a signature touch and presented versatile and wearable pieces. I guess in future I would love to see her push the limits a bit and come up with a few more daring pieces.

Here is a little slideshow to give you a better idea (all photos and editing by me):

Dima - Gostiny Dvor, Moscow

I just love Dima's androgynous look. Besides having a funky style, this young man has a very good fashion eye - I happened to be sitting next to him at one of the shows and overheard his comments on the  clothes and the show itself and they were spot on (basically this means that he said exactly what I was thinking). Dima is a blogger but unfortunately I did not get the name of his blog. I would say this one is to look out for as I can sense a new star stylist in the making.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Alena Akhmadullina AW2011 - Review

Alena Akhmadullina is best described as the … well pretty much the shining star of the Russian fashion world. She has been doing this for a while and she knows how it's done. I personally really like her style, although the Russian fashion community is separated into what seems to be two camps - ones who love it and ones who… don't understand. She stays true to her style showing consistency and individualism of the brand. Unfortunately the majority of the Russian fashion 'absorbers' (for the lack of a better word) are still amused by the over-the-top and bright and shiny designs which is not what Akhmadullina is all about.

Alena Akhmadullina's Autumn/Winter 2011 was extremely well-executed. She stuck to a theme, a consistent colour palette and present pieces that wearable and sellable. 

Music, ambience, models, the whole show was well planned and delivered. A little bit of retro with designs reminiscent of 1940's were well accompanied by a little bit of leather (note the leather patches on the knees). It was a well-balanced collection which had a bit of everything, including fur which is the new season favourite across the board. All in all a solid collection delivered by Akhmadullina.

Check out some of the photos here (all photos and editing by me - apologies for the shaky hands):

Andrey - Gostiny Dvor, Moscow

Friday, April 1, 2011

Julia Vydolob - after Viktor & Rolf show, Paris Fashion Week 2011

Julia Vydolob - Fashion Editor, LookAtMe

Katya, Volvo Fashion Week Moscow

Alisa - Gostiny Dvor, Moscow