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Country People Fashion Podcast: The Royal Wedding What we Think of the Dress, the Rings and the Hats

3 May

How to find your individual style in second hand shops and why is it popular?

28 Apr

Probably, it is now part of student culture to wear something vintage. Wherever we go, we can see young people dressed as if they just appeared from the 1980’s or 1990’s for example. In Sheffield the amount of vintage clothing shops has doubled. There are about five vintage shops in the city centre and at least three of them have opened in the last year.

Shop on Division Street in Sheffield has no name, because the shop owner Nick has specific idea about his policy in selling second hand items. It is therefore people who want to find their individual style by combining something old and quality with something new and trendy. He said: “I remember when I was a student in London in the 1980’s I used to shop at Camden and Portobello flea markets, every single shop there looked exactly like mine. This is nothing new!  My store looks eclectic, like in the 1980’s and I think students of the 80’s were the beginners of the individuality, they were trying to find their identities through clothes.”  Nick believes that old clothes used to be better quality, because it is still wearable after 20-30 years, whereas if we buy clothes from Primark buttons are falling off the next day. High street shops and fashion magazines recreate the vintage look – all the patterns and style is now being copied from the most popular eras like the 1960’s or 1980’s for example. Therefore, this store offers unique and genuine pieces of clothing from the era each individual is interested in. It is also cheaper than high street prices, which makes it attractive for students especially.

The Freshman’s store on Carver Street is one of the oldest in Sheffield. Its owner Matthew and Paul in business for a very long time and have experience in sales in different places around the world such as Los Angeles and New York. Their shop is different to Nick’s store, as it looks neat and clean. Every item of clothing is ironed and carefully hanging on the rail. There are a lot of accessories, mirrors and lights, which creates an atmosphere of an individual and independent shop.

Generally it doesn’t matter what type the vintage or second hand shop is. People who buy pieces of clothing from previous eras find it attractive for various reasons. Firstly, it has been advertised a lot in the fashion world and has been very popular among students and hipsters. Secondly, it is always nostalgic to go twenty or ten years back, wear it today and stand out from the crowd.


All pictures by Yvan Rodic (Facehunter)

By Tanya Andrejeva

The growth of a foetus depicted through fashion, Helen and Katie Storey’s updated 1997 Primitive Streak collection in Sheffield

18 Apr

 Fashion meets biology in a creation of 27 dresses artfully depicting the key developments during the first 1,000 hours of human life.

Originally designed and made by two sisters 14 years ago, the ‘Primitive Streak’ collection is the art work of artist/designer Helen Storey and biologist Kate Storey. Together they made a collection which stylises the intricate processes each of us went through in the womb.

Talking to BBC’s Radio 4 Helen said that it was difficult at first and she felt paralysed by the project. But her sister saw it as “an extraordinary thing to be able to convey this process to as many different parts of the community as possible…I had a very unique opportunity, with Helen working in the fashion industry, to reach a completely different audience.”

With new pieces, including the ‘Lung Dress,’ a sample of them went on tour. They were showcased in Sheffield, Newcastle and London and have previously been to eight countries since 1997.

1) From day one. The ‘Sperm Coat’ represents, as the name suggests, fertilisation. Helen said she, “had to wait for biology to show me what to do.” This led to 105 hours of embroidery onto a fabric which was dissolved in water and this extremely delicate coat was born.

2) From day one. The ‘Anaphase’ dress is made from silk, mirrored paper and viscose jersey. Together they show cell division where the cell and DNA multiplies.

3) 5-6 days. The ‘Implantation’ dress shows the embryo (the white part) embedding in the womb (the black part). This causes the development of the placenta, creating a direct line to the mother’s nutrients.4) 12-14 days. This piece is where the collection got its name, Kate says this is because, “Primitive Streak is a really pivotal structure in the embryo”. This is where the internal organs and tissues are made from a cell layer called Mesoderm. This is formed when cells crawl from the top layer of the cell through a groove in the Primitive Streak, making the new layer in the middle. The Primitive Streak is represented by two metallic sheets which feed into the central black groove at the back of the dress. The gold metallic fabric is the Mesoderm emerging.

5-6) From day 20. The ‘Heart Bird’ dress is one in a series showing foetal heart development. This dress is made from crin and shows how the different chambers form. The shape of the dress is held by nylon wires and the heart was made by pulling fabric over a shaped wooden block.

7) 22-25 days. The ‘Neurulation’ dress is made from white fake fur and it shows how the central nervous system forms. A sheet of cells called the Neural Plate roll up into a tube which will develop into the brain and spinal cord.

8 ) From day 24. The ‘Limb Formation’ dress is made from an artist’s primed canvas. Chloe Sendall painted the expanding limb buds in oils to show the start of arms and legs growing on the four week old foetus.

9) 28 days to birth. The ‘Lung Dress’ shows how our lungs develop from two small buds branching out. This dress is made from soft, shiny sponge and the branching is printed onto the velvet and chiffon wing like lungs.

10) From day 33. The final dress in the exhibition is the ‘Spinal Column’ dress which is made from a patterned fabric and a resin cast spine. This was hand plated with foil and 8,000 fibre optic endings, representing the nerves extending out to the body, are threaded through.

This collection saw new life brought to an old project which Helen and her sister are still passionate about, “we’ve gone from the bleeding obvious, in some cases, to something of great complexity. We’ve tried to use fashion as a way to bring that to life.”


By Sarah Walters

For a larger view of the photos click on the picture

Award Winning Student Fashion Designer: Fascinated With War and Russian Royal Family

27 Mar

Since Kate Harrod won the award for the Best Student Fashion Designer for her spectacular and unusual dress, she’s been followed by a number of magazines and journalists, who wanted to get an interview with her, to highlight her success.

Kate told me how she was inspired by Russian Royal family and their tragic life to create this strong award-winning dress. As you can see from the pictures it is massive and very impressive. Red leather top is decorated with epaulette, which Kate ordered from America and had delivered on the day of the show, the medals are real – Kate bought them from a vintage fair paying £30 for each. She has put a lot of effort and money into that dress and obviously is very pleased with the result, as is everybody else.

Kate’s fascination with Russia started when her grandmother visited St. Petersburg in the late 1960s. As a little girl Kate remembers how she used to play with fur hat and other souvenirs her grandmother brought from Russia.

Kate’s approach is very individual and well researched, as she avoided the cliché imaginations about how Russian culture influence on clothes design. That’s why she has chosen the specific period of time reflecting the most dramatic events and designing the award winning dress. She said: “The brief was to choose a country to base your dress on and I immediately interested in Russia. But I thought I’m not going to down this typical theme like Russian dolls or architecture of Russia, I thought I’m going to go a bit deeper.”  She was fascinated how Royal family was so unite and close, they all seemed very lovely to Kate, although they all had so tragic death. Kate was so interested in the story of life and death of the last Royal Family of Russia and war during that period, that she  wanted to fit it into her dress. The Queen and her daughters were wearing diamonds in  their corsets, so when killers shot them bullets were reflecting from them for a while, that is why Kate put a lot of effort and creativity to make the corset. Also because it is traditional for a wedding dress to have a corset. With colours Kate wanted to bring the reflection of country and war, but also she wanted to accent the fact that the whole family died.  “I wanted to make quite a dark dress, as opposed to traditional white or cream wedding dress, so I let my imagination and creativity to go wild.”

By Tanya Andrejeva

Burberry Designer To Recieve An Award At Sheffield Hallam

17 Mar

Chief creative officer of Burberry, Christopher Bailey, will receive an honorary doctorate at Sheffield Hallam University in recognition of his services to the fashion industry and his charitable work in the UK.

On 18th March a special ceremony will be held to award Bailey with the honorary doctorate. Fashion students and lectures at Hallam will have the chance to watch the ceremony. This is set to be his third doctorate, having already received two from the University of Westminster and the University of Huddersfield.

Yorkshire born Bailey is responsible for the design of all Burberry collections and products, as well as advertising, corporate art direction, architectural design, multi-media content and overall brand image.

In 2008 he set up The Burberry Foundation with Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts, which helps young people achieve their goals and potential through the power of their creativity.

He says: “I am looking forward to spending time at Sheffield Hallam University and to meeting their final year fashion students. I am extremely honoured to be recognised by the University in this way, and I am particularly passionate about supporting the next generation of British design talent.”

Professor Philip Jones, vice-chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University said: “Christopher is an internationally successful figure in the industry, with a passion for sharing his talent by educating others. We are proud to welcome him to Sheffield Hallam.”


By Carrie-Ann Vessey

Pictures from Google

International Women’s Day: Three Women in Fashion Who Inspire Us

9 Mar

Since this week we are dedicating our site to influential British women, we decided to take a look at some of the women who have rocked the fashion world, whether it be by their unique approach to fashion, their model status or their attempts to incorporate their lifestyle into fashion. We have looked at veteran of fashion, Vivienne Westwood; controversial model and her contribution to high street fashion, Kate Moss and wannabe designer Katie Price, who is taking her unique style to the catwalk.

Dame Vivienne Westwood (born Vivienne Isabel Swire in Tintwistle, Cheshire, England on 8 April, 1941), is the English fashion designer largely responsible for modern punk and new wave fashions.
By her mid twenties, Vivienne Westwood’s life seemed to be passing in a distinctly unremarkable way. At 25, she was married to an air steward; she lived in Willesden, went to church and taught in a local primary school.
Then something remarkable happened, she met Malcolm Mclaren, future manager of the Sex Pistols, and he led her into the underground of the late 1960’s street. He lectured her on the political power of art and liberated her creative desires from their bondage in working class conformity. Westwood became a subversive seamstress of pop.
Her first designs hung in Let it Rock on the King’s Road in 1971. Five years later the boutique, now named Sex, sold ripped T-shirts, chains and assorted bondage gear and Westwood was dressing Johnny Rotten and the Sex Pistols.
In the early 80s her collaboration with McLaren was a result of the first catwalk show – The Pirate collection. Pirates were the answer. The early 1980s was the time of the New Romantics, an urban arts scene that eschewed gender distinctive dress to delight in the theatre of courtier costume and whirls of eyeliner. Catching their mood, Westwood looked back to the 19th Century for her first collection, which she called Pirates. By the mid 80s her shows were shown on catwalks of Paris, then further collaboration with huge designer as Giorgio Armani.
In the 1990s Westwood had many awards in fashion, and she was appointed as professor of fashion at Vienna. This was the time when she launched her menswear collection Cut and Slash. She continued to open new shops across the UK and abroad in places such as New York and Milan.
Her designs combine a fearless unconformity with a sense of tradition. She is renowned for her gentle parody of Establishment styles, her use of very British fabrics such as Harris tweed and tartan, her re-use of historic garments such as the corset and crinoline. Yet, her approach has always been practical, driven by a curiosity about how things work, a process she describes as ‘learning through action’.

  • Educated in University of Westminster, Midlesex University and Goldsmiths.
  • In 1971 opened her first shop with McLaren at 430 King’s Road, London called ‘Let it Rock’
  • 3 times awarded Fashion Designer of the Year by the British Fashion Council
  • Awarded OBE by her Majesty Queen Elizabeth ll
  • Has two sons from different marriages – Ben Westwood and Joe Corre
  • Collections include wedding dresses, fragrances, menswear.

Katherine Ann Moss was born on January 16, 1974 in Addiscombe, Croydon, South London, England.  She was first spotted by model agency boss Sarah Doukas as a 14-year-old at JFK airport, and started her modelling career doing unremarkable shoots for teenage magazines. Photographer Corinne Day, one of the key players of the early Nineties “grunge” period, spotted her potential and snapped the adolescent topless and wearing a Native American headdress. The picture was published on the front cover of style bible The Face, and a Generation X icon was born. She has appeared on over 300 magazine covers. She is one of the most recognized supermodels in the world.

Unlike many of her contemporaries, who lost their hipness through over-exposure or as a result of the fashion industry’s constant need to reinvent itself, Kate has always been at the cutting edge of style. Today she is Britain’s wealthiest model, with an estimated fortune of nearly ₤15 million.

In 1998 Kate made headlines when it was revealed she’d checked into London’s celeb-friendly rehab centre The Priory after suffering what was termed “exhaustion”.
After splitting with Johnny Depp in May 1998, Kate was involved with a number of relationships, including one with Jefferson Hack, the former editor of style magazine Dazed & Confused, with whom she had a child. Lila Grace was born in September 2002, but by early 2004 her parents had decided to call it a day on their relationship.

She soon began dating singer Pete Doherty, whose addiction problems were well documented in the press and in September 2005 Kate became entangled in a drugs furore herself after tabloids showed pictures of her allegedly using cocaine. She lost several major modelling contracts, including Burberry, and issued an apology.

Still the darling of the fashion world despite her tumultuous personal life, she went on to land a deal with high street chain Topshop to design her own range, cementing her status as a style leader.

  • Attended Ridgeway Primary School and Riddlesdown High School in Purley.
  • In September 2005, she was caught up in a cocaine scandal as pictures of her allegedly snorting cocaine were published by the Daily Mirror.
  • Won the ‘Sexiest Woman’ NME Award in March 2007.
  • Launched a fragrance and body lotion range with Coty in 2007.
  • Released a collection of clothes exclusively for the TopShop chain in May 2007

Katie Price (born Katrina Amy Alexandria Infield in Brighton, East Sussex, England on May 22nd 1978) has been in and out of the headlines since she found fame as a Page 3 Glamour Model.

At the suggestion of a friend to have professional photographs taken, she decided to pursue a modelling career. After sending the picture to a modelling agency in London she was invited to their studios for photo shoots and to discuss a contract.

In 1996 she was offered a job as a Page 3 model in The Sun and appeared in topless photos under the name Jordan. 

Unhappy with the size of her breasts, she had enhancement surgery to increse her natural 32B/C to a 32D. The Sun, however, later barred her from Page 3 after announcing they would only hire ‘all natural’ models. She still continued modelling for magazines such as FHM, Maxim, Nuts, Loaded, Vogue, British Elle and the British Edition of Playboy.

In May 2002 she gave birth to soon Harvey Price, whose father is footballer Dwight Yorke. Shortly after his birth, Harvey was found to have a condition known as septo-optic dysplasia, meaning that the development of his optic nerve was unpredictable. It has later been discovered he is on the autistic spectrum, gains weight easily and finds walking difficult.

In 2004 she appeared in ITV’s I’m a Celebrity…..Get Me Out Of Here! Where she met future husband Peter Andre. The couple married in September 2005 and had two children Junior Savva Andreas Andre (born 13th June 2005) and Princess Tiaamii Crystal Esther Andre (born 29th June 2007.) However the couple divorced September 2009. She later remarried cage fight Alex Reid in February 2010 but the couple announced their separation in January 2011.

Her popularity may have taken a dive since her split from Pete, but her brand hasn’t. She has successfully released books, perfumes, a hair care range, an equestrian range, bedding, reality shows and has recently created her own fashion line.

Although not everyone will agree with Jordan’s fashion choices, she has teamed up with designer Lamis Khamis to bring you Day 22. On the 22nd (which is the day she was born on) of every month they will add new limited edition piece to the collection as they wanted “a brand that is fresh all the time.” If you are interested in buying any of the Day 22 collection go to

Jordan may not be in the headlines for all the right reasons, but she has transformed herself into a smart and savvy businesswoman, and this is inspirational to many young girls out there.

  • Attended Blatchington Mill School, where she swam for Sussex in regional competitions.
  • At the age of 13 modelled for a clothing line, however the project’s photographer was found to be a convicted pedophile.
  • In 2002 she was treated for cancer. She had a leiomyosarcoma on her finger and the tumour was removed.
  • Price is a keen horse rider and has taken part in Dressage competitions.
  • After many years at ITV2, she left the channel and signed a new deal worth a reported £10million with Living TV in 2010

All pictures courtesy of Google

By Carrie-Ann Vessey and Tanya Andrejeva

Galliano Fashion Show is a Go Go

7 Mar

Despite the controversy surrounding John Galliano and the anti-semitic comments he made in a Paris café his fashion show still went ahead at Paris Fashion Week. He was absent from the show and it was low key in a small Parisian townhouse. The show featured 19 looks which is significantly smaller than what is usually shown at a catwalk show.

By Sarah Walters

photo sourced from here

Galliano Sacked for Anti-Semitism

1 Mar

1 March 2011: 19:32

John Galliano, a British fashion designer, has been sacked by Dior after he allegedly made anti-Semitic comments in a Paris café last week.

Video footage was posted online and showed him making racist comments on Thursday to Philippe Virgiti, 41, and Géraldine Bloch, 35 at café La Perle. He was later arrested and suspended by Dior the following day pending police investigations.

Old footage also emerged of him telling a waitress: “People like you would be dead today – your mothers, your forefathers would be f****** gassed” and stating his love for Hitler. This was from December and also at Le Perle.

His lawyer says he denies these claims but chief executive of Dior, Sidney Toledano, said the comments “totally contradict the values which have always been defended by Christian Dior” in a statement made earlier today.

Galliano’s dismissal comes on the first day of Paris fashion week and it remains uncertain if his show, scheduled for Friday, will still go ahead.

The video footage from December can be found on The Sun’s website here.

By Sarah Walters

Photo and information were sourced through BBC news. The original URL can be found here.

Details of those involved and the cafe were found from The Telegraph. The original URL can be found here.

Sheffield model is told size 8 is “too fat for London”

1 Mar

London fashion week has just finished providing new trends for next Autumn/Winter season in clothing, make up and …size. According to the latest reports some designers use larger models for their shows now. The Look magazine for example is holding its annual competition for curvy supermodels. The girls, who entered the competition, are size 12-14 modelled high street clothes, and are featured in Look magazine. Since the magazine started to use curvy models every week, there are more fashion shows using slightly bigger models. Designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier and Mark Fast have used larger models on the catwalk as well as a number of fashion magazines such as Elle, Glamour, V magazine have used plus size models, but it was a one-off thing considered as a sensation of fashion and put under “special” feature, which means it is still not a standard approach for fashion magazines or high end designers to use plus size models alongside size 6-8 models.

Hannah S. Groves

None the less, a lot of models can easily be turned away for being “too fat”. Hannah Groves, 24 from Sheffield has been modelling for several years in the North,  she is signed to a Manchester modelling agency. She did catwalk shows, editorial photo shoots, modelled bridal wear and lingerie. She told me how difficult it is to get a modelling job in London, because it is so competitive and the girls are really small there. She was offered to go down to London to attend castings and possibly a job after. Spending 2 weeks there, long hours of waiting in corridors with other girls, who didn’t talk or smile at all – was a tough experience for Hannah, even more because in the end, after her hard work the agent eventually told her she was too big. “I am size 8 that is usually fine in the North. Because I have never worked in London really, the models are usually smaller there, and if I would go to London I would be a bit too big.” she says.

Hannah S. Groves

Obviously, someone’s real life experience is illustrating how conservative the fashion world is. Designers, editors, stylists – they are trying to bring a change, but it’s only seen as a temporary trend, because fashion is so relative and so fast paced. Probably, in the fashion world people like to know what to expect from the fashion and when someone is trying to bring a change, they don’t really accept it, at least not so fast. After all models are showing clothes, it should look like it is hanging on the rail. When models are encouraged to bring more personal style into fashion – they start to look different – it is not always working for conservative traditional fashion houses with reputation – and the are still dictators of world’s fashion.

By Tanya Andrejeva

The Oscars 2011: The fashion expert and the blogger on the red carpet outfits

1 Mar

The Oscars have just been and stuttering down the red carpet was the usual swathe of dolled up celebrities tottering on designer heals and squeezing into skin tight dresses. So aside from that little golden man everybody wants adorning their outfits what did the A-Listers do to stand out from their peers?

As a fashion novice I have given some unknowledgable opinions from a real person. But, for the fashionistas out there I’ve invited fashion student Lydia Gardiner to give her professional and technical views on the outfits with details of who they were designed by and how they were constructed.


Before shocking the audience by throwing an f-bomb into her speech Melissa Leo donned the doily look and brought a sexy edge to our Nan’s favourite croched accessory. On Oscar night she looked sleek and elegant with a simple up do and natural makeup. This was a definite contrast from her gritty, bleach blonde character in The Fighter, for which she won best supporting actress. Pairing simple gold shoes and accessories with the exceptionally detailed dress Melissa pulled off a classy look to suit both her age and style.

 Lydia’s view: “In my opinion, the Marc Bouwer custom made dress comes across as a rip off of Marchesa from their spring/Summer collection shown at New York Fashion Week (bottom right). Melissa’s dress is intricately beautiful but is ruined by the high collar and low V-neck. the dress appears heavy which takes away from the delicacy of the laser-cut design which would have taken hours to produce even using the right machinery. But, she has accessorised well with Jay Carlile jewels.”





 Well known for her eclectic fashion sense Helena Bonham Carter did not fail to impress. Wearing an outfit more reminiscent of her part in Sweeny Todd than the multi award winning film The King’s Speech she stayed true to her gothic taste and presented herself in a simple, black gown with a velvet corset. Backing the Brits all the way of course she proudly showed off her patriotic pins.


Lydia’s veiw: “Although the corset is beautifully constructed the dress is almost conservative and nondescript which I feel is explained by Helena’s statement: “I thought it would be nice to celebrate film instead of fashion.” However, the corset would have taken hours to make with its small panels, V-neck and the sleeves alone look as if they have five or six panels each. The designer of the dress, Colleen Atwood, was the costume designer for Tim Burton’s ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and you can definately see the stunning corsetry she made for the film may have inspired this dress for Helena.”


Back from Underland Anne Hathaway decided to outshine the world famous red carpet and showcased a scarlet Valentino gown with lips to match. This ruched and bubbled number certainly showed off her tall, slender frame by moulding perfectly to her figure. Most likely impossible to sit in Miss Hathaway had seven outfits for the night including Givenchy and Vivienne Westwood showing her wealth and broad fashion sense.

 Lydia’s view: “This Archive Haute couture Valentino gown is timeless with princess darts and multiple darts in the back to create a to die for silhouette. But, I do feel that the floral rosette appliqué detail is very much lost because of the colour and gives the dress a slightly frumpy and messy look.”




 Veering away from the traditional penguin and morning suits Josh Brolin and best actor nominee Javier Bardem shone out in white while presenting the Oscars for best original and best adapted screenplay.

 Lydia’s view: “In this photograph the men are wearing matching white/cream suits which in some lights appear to have a vague pink hue. The suits are well tailored with flawless topstitching, welt pockets, five small buttons on the button stands and a single button on the centre front. The only noticable difference is on the lapels; Brolin’s are traditional whereas Bardem’s have a slight curve. These suits contrast the dark ones they wore on the red carpet with Bardem in black Gucci and Brolin in navy.”


While the sapphire blue sequined dress stood out it was not the sparkles that drew people’s eyes to Amy Adams but rather the £800,000 ($1.35m) worth of jewellery which graced the front of it. Opting for a simple, wavy hairstyle and lightly made up face Amy was no shrinking violet and chose an outfit which brings to mind the Heart of the Ocean diamond necklace from Titanic.


Lydia’s view: “I don’t know which glittered more, Amy’s combined 63.99-carat emeralds or the beautiful L’Wren Scott midnight-blue sequined gown. The dress is so form fitting that it could have been inspired by Oscar himself. Both the patterns and the garment are so well made that the dress fits as a second skin with the skirt splitting at the side and more fullness from the knees down. The stunning Cartier emerald necklace gives the impression of a lower neckline.”


 By Sarah Walters

All Oscars pictures were sourced from BBC news. The original URL can be found through this Link.

The Marchesa dress photos were taken from Vogue. The original URL can be found through this Link.

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