Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The other side of the PRESS!

Wednesday, 13th October

It was time to hit the road with the Oasis press team. The aim of the day was to visit as many fashion magazine and newspaper publications as possible. Why?, to promote the new season Christmas product and earn some brownie points by enticing the editors and journalists with hand massages, manicures, cupcakes and sticks of pink rock! (how fabulous)

First stop was Cosmopolitan and Harpers Baazar, a place I thought was sure to give me a 'behind the scenes' look into the high power position held by fashion publications rated highly in the Industry. I looked forward to the clicking of the heels on the marble foyer on the way to the lift. Do the girls really compete against each other in the daily fashion stakes? Are there any characters that resemble Cruella da Ville and abuse the high power position they're in even if they're in bits? The answer was NO. The women were lovely, they were on time and the conversation flowed easily. They were dressed immaculately yet differently and they did not seem to be in competition with each other. Raging! Very few of them actually needed the hand massage and manicure on offer by the lovely Kate from Champneys ( so I took her up on the offer and had mine done - amazeballs).

Next stop - The Daily Mail, You Magazine, Metro, The Independent, Evening Standard, ES Magazine - a sterile office space that resembled an American mall. Then we moved on to Grazia and from there on to the high quality newspaper publications of The Guardian and The Observer. The office space was vast and covered in one off Warhol and Bansky prints. Celebrity faces graced the walls in a block coloured photographic exhibiton. It was an impressive space and the people were lovely. Polly Vernon from The Observer, won my best dressed award of the day. She wore a grey and black Chanel tweed, frayed edge jacket, a silver felt top, leather panelled trousers with silver side zips and the latest off the runway aviator shearling boots! Put simply - she looked Faboosh!

(l-r) Hannah, Me and Hayley (Best Team Ever)

Thursday, 14th October

Day two of the press rodashow saw me and the fabulous team above go to more publications, this time the Daily Telegraph, Telegraph Magazine, Stella, Look, Times Magazine, The Times, Sunday Times Style, Fabulous and the Daily Express. Over the two days we had visited over twenty publications and seen over 70 journalists. All the time me and the team were chauffered around town in a blacked out mercedes. Too much fun was had carrying the clothes rail and too much fun was had falling over it. It was great day out and I was already looking forward to working with the team again. I suppose it helps that the press office is Karen Millens' old apartment, located on Regent and Oxford and spread over three floors with a brilliant view of the city. Hmmmm - one day!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

All aboard the Fashion Bus!

Wednesday, 6th October

Time to hit Dundrum Town Centre to shoot the Xpose piece for the Oasis Fashion Bus with Lisa Cannon. A unique experience awaited the public on board the bus, with free style tips talks and tips on the new seasons collections by yours truely. However it didn't stop at style, there was also free hair and make-up consultations with industry professionals. So with the clothes rails ready to go and a brilliant selection of outfits for the coming days I had time to get an insight into the hair and make regime for the fashion bus journey. Hairdressing expert and funnyman Michael Doyle (who has tended the locks of Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington) from Peter Mark was on hand to give hair and colour advice and the occasional up-do. That's upstyle for those outside of the sticks! The make up was carried out by a young team from Loreal.

With Models Laura and Iseult ready to rock the new season collection, it was time for the shoot! Take a look at the snippet from the first day on board the fashion bus! 

 Thursday, October 7th

It was an extra start for all on board the Oasis Fashion Bus. 1st Stop - St Stephens Green and the early morning press breakfast, an introduction to the the new Oasis range, then time to hop on board for some style advice and makeovers from the Peter Mark and Loreal teams. With a huge press interest on the day it wasn't long before the people were forming a queue to hop on board for their individual style experience and whats more, a fabulous goody bag. Everyone loves a good goody bag!

Friday, October 8th

The bus moved on to Dundrum Town Centre and the public came out in their droves to sample the fashion and makeovers on board. My on the hour style talks, turned out to be taking place every twenty minutes and unbeknownst to myself (haha - friends will laugh), I discovered I had the gift of the gab. My jaws were sore! In between the fashion bus and all the mentalness, I was trying desperatly to secure my apartment over in London. It was proving to be more hassle than it was worth. Hollie, the agent was becoming a pain in the snatch and I was no more in the humour, so when she rang to say we couldn't have the apartment until Monday, |I roared down the phone and told her she was dead when I got to London. Only half of Dundrum heard me though, so it was grand!

Saturday. October 9th 

Time to go the sticks, Cork again; via the most horrible train journey ever. I swear sometimes it's more like a small town than a city. I would be bet around if I said that to them down there but hey.... I SAID IT! The looks were hilarious. Who is that man in the skinny rust colour jeans and silk cream and black striped shirt? He's weird... (",). People actually gasped. Too funny! But on board the bus it was all fun and frolics. Really busy with people hopping on board to get a piece of the action and the odd snap with myself and Lisa 'Oasis' Cannon!

Me and Iseult on board the Oasis Fashion Bus..

Myself, Lisa Cannon, Ian Galvin and Michael Doyle - the Superteam!

Monday, 11th October

After a great night out with friends in the Sycamore on Sunday night, listening to some of my favourite tracks and thinking about what I'd miss when I got back to London it was time to go back home. It still sounds weird. London is home now. Really? Hmmmm.... Anyway if it wasn't bad enough that I was leaving Dublin and my family and friends behind, things got even worse when I got to the airport. The little bitch at the boarding gate thought she had nothin better to do than make me fit my bag into the skinny blue thing (i'd swear that gets thinner by the week, it must be on the poxy Atkins). Anyway long story short - I was charged for my bag and in the height of it I shot her a look at which point i'm sure she thought "I should have just let him on". If looks could kill, the horror would be dead. Although on reflection she's probably just trying to up her rating so she makes next years tarty calender! God loves a tryer. ;-) Never AGAIN!

Back in London and first night in the new pad - at last. My own place. Empty as it may be and not a duvet in sight, I loved it. Thank God for that turkey jumper!

Over n Out.

D (",)

Monday, October 18, 2010

I felt Xposed!

Wednesday, 29th September

It was time to go back to Dublin, this time for an extended stay. I was scheduled to work with the Oasis and Warehouse teams on promoting their new collections. First stop - bed, for a quick snooze then back to the action. Myself and Grace Mangan from the show were involved in an Xpose event in Warehouse in Dublin with the very talented Lisa Cannon. The talking point were the picks of the new season collection.

Here's a little snippet of the action from the day.  - Job done!

Friday, 1st October

Train will depart from platform 2 in ten minutes, the droning voice reverberated in my ears. It was way too early in the morning for loud noises and the like. I was meeting Holly Shortall from the show. We were offering style advice and a friendly face for the public opening of the new Warehouse store in Cork. Laughed for the majority of the train journey, my Cher Lloyd impression which I had down to a T, had Holly waking the entire carriage. Good times!
After a quick pick up in Cork by my London flat mate Laura we arrived at Warehouse. The new store concept, a refit not unbecoming of a Manhattan style loft conversion with exposed brickwork interior and metal cladding and rails at different levels. Clean lines and very minimal, me all over! ;-) 
It turned out to be a major laugh and a great evening for the store. The red carpet and free west coast cooler (gulp) made the customers feel right at home. A great team!

Me in Zara and McQueen and Holly with two models in new season Warehouse!

Saturday, 2nd October

After a Happy Birthday wish to one of my good friends Warren Duffy, it was into town for some meetings to do with Oasis brand merchandising and marketing. The Oasis fashion bus in conjunction with Xpose was arriving next week and the place was buzzing!

Tuesday, 5th October

It was time to set up the Oasis press room for a presentation to Irish press on the Oasis new season collection. The objective was simple - a minimal look with perspex rails hanging from the ceiling, five maticulously positioned mannequins sporting the new collection overlooking St Stephens Green. Sounds simple but it was really hard work. I then had to choose the clothes and style the fashion bus for the folowing mornings photoshoot and filming day in Dundrum. Job done. Time to rush back to town for the Peter O' Brien fashion show in Arnotts. Peter, one of the judges from the show was showcasing his first collection in collaboration with Arnotts. The looks, a simple silouette, tailored to perfection, luxurious and sophisticated chic, like a 1950's Parisian woman walking along on the banks of the Seine. This seasons popular colour palette of camel and black once again prevailed. A brilliant show! Huge congratulations to Peter who was a brilliant judge and friend on StyleWARS. He offered invaluable advice for which I will be forever grateful. 

Peter with his wonderful collection in the background.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

'I got my tubes tied' - London Fashion Week

After spending a few days in Dublin styling the new Oasis store on Stephens Green and working alongside the creative team with concepts for Christmas projects, it was back to the hustle and bustle of London only this time I knew it was going to be different. Different how you might ask. Different in that it was my frist taste of London Fashion Week (LFW), one of the biggest weeks on the calender year for any fashionista (do I count - I asked myself - of course I do). Fashion week was well and truely under way when I arrived, with some of the major designers having already showcased their new collections early in the week. The word around town was that it was gonna be hard for anyone to top Giles. A versatile collection of prints that flowed with effortless ease down the runway on well known faces such as Kelly Brook and Abbey Clancy along with the usual faces whose legs would be ready to fall off at the end of the week. Marios Schwab, a favourite of mine had featured in a magazine the previous day and so there was a lot of hype created about his show. It would have been easy for him to dissappoint but he doesn't have it in him. Going back to his Austrian routes, where he had studied hand-sewing techniques, he produced a show that would make other designers envious of his knowledge for body shape and texture, he thinks in sillouettes and lines (just like me lol). Classical, yet contemporary and most of all, wearable! It was FABOOSH.. Anyway i'm getting away. Back down on earth it was time for my Fashion Week.

Monday, 20th September

With fashion week in full flow (not heavy flow), it was time for my first task. The Oasis creative team had been working in collaboration with Westfield Shopping Centre (WoW) on a scheme called Westfield Car Boot Fair. An idea orchestrated by non other than Mary Portas - a mind of knowlegde and ideas like no other, Mary understands the importance of retail in a hign fashion capital, she just GETS it. I arrived to set up the Oasis car space to see twenty cars all lined up, decorated in completly different ways, ready to be filled to the brim. We spent a few hours dressing the space and didn't stop until the boot was bursting at the seems with boots, bags and scarves. Two mannquins sat on the roof as if looking out over the shopping centre.It was fab. I got another taste of what it would be like to be an events organiser with a massive budget. So much fun. Other retailers participating included Reiss, Topshop, Wolford, Swarovski and Whistles. Right next to our space was that of Storm Model Management, what exactly they were selling I guess I'll never know. "Get your stick thin models, three for a pound". Hardly!

Tuesday, 22nd September

Jealousy kicks in. Why? Because I was sat beside a guy on the tube to work that morning with a Burberry show tag hanging around his neck alongside one of the biggest Canon camera lenses I'd ever seen. I on the other hand was on my way to photograph some the LFW windows, which now seemed like a poxy shift. It was something I had originally thought might be cool. All of a sudden I was depressed for the day.. Ragin Spice.

At selfridges one thing was for sure - it was all about the show, a fabulously creative display to launch their new shoe galleries. The feature of the windows for me was "There was an old woman who lived in a shoe" - a massive installation of a super stylish elderly woman looking out of her ten foot house, made entirely of new shoe collections, including the Chanel "yeti" boots. It was classy but in a fun colourful way.

Next stop - Bond Street. Designer Heaven for those who have the moolah!! Rows of the biggest designers in the business, ridiculously expensive but fabulous none the less. I found myself looking at the architecture for the first time. The street just knows how to draw you in. Its incredible, but I was in a hurry and had already seen the window displays of Gucci, Armani, Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Hermes and many others. I was floating past until a statuesque mannequin sporting a gold feathered bandage style headpiece stopped me in my tracks. She was wearing what looked like a medievel masterpiece. A deep rouge full sleeve bodice delicately hand embroided in ornate gold sequins and treading with a pleated silk skirt attachment - she actually stopped me in my tracks. I had seen the dress before. It was one of my favourite dresses from the Alexander McQueen final collection. I stood still for a good half hour and looked at it from every angle possible. Massive! Would have loved to camp outside but it wasn't an option.

Then on to Harvey Nichols in Knightsbridge, which I eventually found after walking for about 40 minutes to Sloan St and back. I was still a novice at finding my way around, something I was having major difficulty with accepting.  When I got there however, it made it all worthwhile. It was the most creative display I had seen in years. A black and orange 3D abstract structures theme (bikes, cars and hammers) - a really high impact row of windows - the feature of which was a ten foot sculpture made entirely from wooden clothes pegs. The window was a focus on some of the hottest talent to come out of London Colleges including Schwab, Ilincic, McCartney and McQueen.

The best of the high street for me was Oasis (obviously) and Zara. This year at Oasis the creative team worked hard on trying to perfect the LFW windows. We were delighted when Drapers Magazine placed us second in a wide review of LFW windows. We beat off a range of high street competitors and designers including Aquascutum, Burberry, Banana Republic, Gucci, Jaeger, Joseph, Reiss, Topshop and Warehouse.!

Wednesday, 22nd September

After an hour and a half of travel getting to the other side (west) of London, I arrived at the gallery for a Hussein Chamalyan exhibition. It had recieved rave reviews from the fashion press and myself and Emma from the creative team couldn't resist a trip to see it for ourselves. OMG were we let down. The exhibition was one of musical influence from Hussein's middle eastern routes, a true reflection of his past. But to me, it lacked originality and was more like a projected concert with a woman made from plaster standing in the middle of the room, a moving mouth projected onto her face. Not my cup of tea. No wonder it was free!

Thursday, 23rd September

Mana! I was working in Manchester and Chester over the next few days so it was VM time. This meant gettin up at the ungodly time of  4:45 (never again). Thank god the Virgin Trains are better than the Iarnrod Eireann ones, that sound like they're changing tracks for the entire journey. I was there in no time. Styling tips and advice in Trafford centre was the aim of the day.

Friday, 24th September

After a somewhat slow day in Chester, I was delighted to be going back to London. I was in the train station in plenty of time. Platform 4 - London, but the train said Crewe, so I asked a rail worker if that was my train on the platform, to which he replied, no, London train is next one on platform. I said ok. Long story short, my train was due to depart any minute so I asked the woman on the train, she said "yeah this is the london train, but ya can't get on, the doors are closing". I said "are you for real" to which she pointed at the clock. I was so frustrated, I could have pulled her off the train by her ugly red locks and booted her up and down the platform! She annoyed me that much. What was worse I had to get the slow train to Crewe and then get a connecting train to London. Then I discovered I had a First Class ticket so I just piged out! Back in London town all was good again. LFW was over.

Pictures to follow............... DG x