Sunday, 12 February 2012

London Madness...

Sorry to all my regular reader's for my lack of posts recently. I have been manically preparing for London Fashion Week! Laura McKinnon Photography and I will be providing you interviews and trend updates from emerging designers on the fringes of the industry. We will bring you coverage of the Margin, Vauxhall Fashion Scout and LGN events catwalks over the next two weeks!


Sunday, 5 February 2012

Haunt Couture

Paris: the home of classic couture, a city where both men and women are renowned as effortlessly chic and suave. Yet, the latest menswear trend to surface the highly respected Paris Fashion Week catwalk was reminiscent of a scene from a horror film, jaws gapped as many grasped their phones, hands shaking ready to dial the fashion police.

Designers Thom Browne and Walter Van Beirendonck brought Halloween to the A/W menswear catwalks with a frightful new fashion of monster chic! Model Frankensteins dragged their feet down the catwalk supporting jumbo shoulder pads, sportswear skull caps and black eye make up.

Plunging down the rabbit hole into a topsy turvy world without logic or proportion is a common practice of American designer Thom Browne but this latest trip into Wonderland is the most wacky to date. The pretext behind Browne's collection was a high school style punks vs. jocks face off but for inspiration Browne turned to the most unusual of sources from the Rocky Horror Picture Show to The Longest Yard. Though Browne's mission is often to entertain, these broad shouldered figures were hardly symbols of fun.

Belgian designer Walter Van Beirendonck's collection 'Lust Never Sleeps' continued his venture into sartorial menswear. However, Beirendonck decided to take this exploration up a notch and match the classic tailoring with horrific S&M influences. Attention that should have been drawn towards the smart, well cut candy coloured suits was, instead, directed toward the threatening, fetish voodoo style warrior masks. Though Beirendonck's menswear collections often induce a mix of violence, colour and humour I am not quite sure what to make of this one. Whatever the true meaning behind this collection is, it is clear that Beirendonck has taken his exploration of gender and and masculinity in style to a whole new level.

All photos are linked back to the original sources.

Friday, 3 February 2012

London Fashion Week!

Trend Tone will be collaborating with award-winning international photographer, Laura McKinnon, for London Fashion Week to bring you all the news from the fringes off the fashion scene!

From the 13th to the 22nd of February we willl review catwalks showcasing emerging designers, bring you the latest A/W 2012 trends and some exclusive interviews.

I hope you are all as excited as I am!


Image from

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Emerging Designers: Who to look out for in 2012 (5)

SEEN Couture
The United Arrab Emirates are sky rocketing into the future. At a time when most of the world is at an economic stand still, the increasingly diverse UAE economy is racing ahead outpacing the rest of us with tourist centres such as Dubai and Abu Dhabi making big bucks. Yet, when it comes to the growing fashion market the forward thinking Emirates have been rather slow to catch on. However, 2011 saw progression with the introduction of Dubai Fashion Week, a chance for the UAE to show the rest of the world what the Middle East has to offer.

One designer who commanded the attention of the fashion world was entrepreneur, Sumayyah Al Suwaidi with her label SEEN couture. When SEEN opened the Harper's Bazzar Arabian Nights catwalk at Dubai Fashion Week in October heads turned and jaws dropped as the limited edition floaty dresses skimmed the floor of the catwalk, finally a brand that manages to combine classic chic style with traditional Middle Eastern dress. 

Launched in 2010, SEEN couture's limited edition, colourful and classically feminine dresses are already a big hit with style concious Middle Eastern ladies. The founder of SEEN, Sumayyah Al Suwaidi has became somewhat of an entrepreneurial icon in the Emirates. The designer first became known in 2001 when she started a career as a digital artist with a series of painting inspired by the late sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Since then Suwaidi has been hailed by art lovers as the first female Emirati digital artist. As Suwaidi's career progressed her entrepreneurial instinct kicked in and she opened her boutique, 'Grafika', as a platform for up and coming designers to sell and showcase their creations to the UAE market and beyond through the website. Grafika is now one of the most famous multi-brand stores in Abu Dhabi. 

With a rising status in the Middle Eastern fashion industry, Suwaidi was invited to judge the Emirati designer of the year competition in 2009. In addition Suwaidi also won the L'Officiel Award in 2010 for the Arab women of the year under the category of 'Best New Talent' and was nominated as Emirates woman of the year in 2011 by Emirates Woman Magazine. 

SEEN couture embodies the powerful and inspiring aspects of Sumayyah Al Suwaidi's personality with the belief that no dress should be made twice as every woman should be unique and independent in her style. The SEEN collections build on the traditional female Middle Eastern dress, taking the jalabiya and abaya dresses and adding a modern edge with the use of classically chic silhouettes and materials such as satin and silk. In Suwaidi's S/S 2012 collection showcased at Dubai Fashion Week off the shoulder cuts, split skirts and drop neck lines featured often. The use of prints, colour blocking and sequins, to create a metallic effect in one particular piece, brought the dresses into the 21st century and impressed an international audience. The stand out piece, for me, was the one shouldered purple dress with emerald green, silk trim down the sleeve and across the waistline.

The first DFW put SEEN on an international platform. There is no doubt that 2012 will push SEEN into the mainstream fashion radar. The label is due to present at the LGN Events A La Mode catwalk show at London Fashion Week this month and with Suwaidi's passion and drive, it is sure to be one hell of a show.