Thursday, 23 June 2011

DIY: How to make a woven bracelet

Apologies for my absence! I have been settling into the Somerset way of life and my new role of Trends Analyst for Clarks sports footwear. To make up for it here is a little DIY post on how to make a woven bracelet like designer jeweller Aurelie Bidermann (except mine is a bargainous £5!) So this is not my own idea but attempted from the fabulous website Honestly WTF centre of all things hot right now, if you haven't heard of this website ch ch check it out a la Beastie Boys.

This was Honestly WTF blogger Erica's stunning result

Though for us Brits it has to be adapted slightly so you will need: a Primark bangle (£2.50) with large links to thread easily,4x coloured embroidery threads, keep them in tonal shades for diversity, 2x hair pins, scissors, a mate with steady hands.

Lay your bracelet out and measure your thread out keeping in 4x the length of the chain bracelet. Do this for the 4 coloured sets of thread.

Measure out your 30 threads, 2 in one colour way and 2 sets of 15 in another colour way to contrast. Tie in knot with 2 inches spare and separate with 2 hair pins.

Weave the inside thread under the first link and then cross the outside thread over and keep it in the same link (each thread goes once into every link)

My friend Becky and I wove round both sides of the chain to give a mega colourful effect. When finished tie in one big knot and trim your ends.

Happy braiding!

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

The Rise of the Gentleman

He is tall, smart in a crisp suit with slicked neat hair, in one hand he holds a whisky tumbler and in the other a lit cigarette. He is a man of few words and has a refined air about him which makes others gravitate towards him. Women adore him while men idolise or envy him. He is Don Draper of the hit US drama Mad Men. Part of the reason the series, now in its fourth season released on DVD this week in the UK, has received such a cult following is due to the magnetism of its main protagonists and Don, who is a rake dressed as gentleman, is the main attraction.

Since the Victorian era there has always been a fascination surrounding the elite members of civilised society also known as Gentleman, whose manners, morals and most importantly style signified their respect and status. However the days of top hats, tailcoats and calling cards have given way to the homogenisation of the Topman style troopers in their uniform of skinny jeans, graphic tees, checked shirts and sneakers. Though there is a cultural shift occurring notably in films, from Tom Fords beautifully executed A Single Man to the recent award winning The King’s Speech, and this smarter trend is in turn affecting men’s fashion. A subtle change in men’s style, such as the prevalence of the classic ‘brown’ shoe from a brogue to a derby as well as the preference of espadrilles in summer imitating timeless Riviera elegance shows a return to debonair style is beginning.

It is no coincidence that in February that the power house that is Net-a-porter launched their brother site Mr Porter as a suave destination for male appreciators of the finer things in fashion. Slick, stylish and rocking an aesthetic that more than resembles the renowned gentleman’s style magazine Fantastic Man, Mr Porter is riding on the increasing wave of male consumer spending in fashion. So what can we expect for men’s fashion in Autumn/Winter 2011 according to the catwalk reports... Bailey for Burberry was championing the dapper royal look, obviously playing on the coming royal nuptials with tailored trousers, shiny smart shoes and structured woollen coats in regal checks or sophisticated camel. Lanvin, as ever the king of elegance, presented the new subversive gent who had an air of the dandy in a tightly tailored jacket but who wore his trousers baggy with a touch of nonchalance. Elbaz wanted to introduce the young to elegance and to highlight the appeal of layering leading to mystery.

Men’s fashion is buttoning up and educating all in sophistication, long live the gent!

Thursday, 6 January 2011

New Year, new post!

Happy New Year everyone and I hope you are all fighting along with your resolutions and not finding an excuse to still drink bubbly by midday and gorge on chocolates (ahem!'s on my many lists of what not to do)

I am back writing a regular column called 'cutting edge' for the brilliant, a fashion and modelling industry website, where I get to do a spot of fashion forecasting. If you want to see my predictions for what we'll all be donning and hankering for in 2011 then please click through here.

I got quite a few clicks on my post on How to make a cushion cover from an old jumper and as one of my trend forecasting musings involved the resurgence of the artisan and the crafty approach to fashion I have mustered up a new project. I saw this lovely idea in the new Elle Decoration which transformed a vintage tennis racket into a mirror and wall feature. I will scan the pic in but for now to help your foggy minds I found this very similar picture from styled by the interior designer Grant K Gibson. Now I am a great hoarder, it's in the blood as my grandad was a smithy and his garden was a fantastical land of scrap metal, and of course I have a pair of vintage rackets! I also know a great cheap glass cutters on the Muswell Hill Broadway who'll hopefully fit the mirror for pennies. Please send me posts or links to any random projects you are undertaking, I love to see others mad surges of creativity!