Tag Archives: NYC

NYC Adventure: Daphne Guinness Exhibition

Daphne Guinness: Jacket by Chanel

I have kind of bombarded you all with my whirl-wind trip to New York, I know I get a little giddy sometimes, but I promise you this is the last post about my NYC Adventure. On my free day before I flew back I just couldn’t resist going to check out the Daphne Guinness exhibition at The Museum at FIT.

Daphne Guiness: Dress by Alexander McQueen

The exhibition features over 100 garments and accessories, think gorgeous McQueen and Chanel pieces, all from Daphne’s personal collection. Seriously this woman has an amazing wardrobe, to be honest she is a walking museum and collector and I am so glad that she chose to share her pieces with the world.

Daphne Guinness: Dress by Chanel

There are a lot of Alexander McQueen pieces, as well as Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, John Galliano for Chrisitan Dior, and Azzedine Alaïa, Dolce & Gabbana, Rick Owens, Gareth Pugh, and Valentino. People do call Daphne Guinness a designer’s muse but for me she really is a collector of couture, someone who loves fashion and who is fearless in her style. You can tell going round this exhibit that Daphne co-curated it as her favourite pieces really do shine through.

Daphne Guinness: Dress by Givenchy

Overall the exhibit isn’t massive, but the space is packed nicely and divided into six sections: the first is ‘Dandyism’, showcasing her masculine styles, I loved all the cropped jackets and white lace’; second area is the more edgy of her looks ‘Armor’, which features the exquisite Gareth Pugh catsuit studded with nails; then separated by translucent screens is my favourite areas dedicated to elegant cocktail suits and evening gowns, titled, respectively, ‘Chic’ and ‘Evening Chic’ there are some gorgeous couture gowns here, as well as the striking Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel jacket seen in the top image, the white sequins and feathers was just amazing to see up close.

The final two areas, ‘Exoticism’ and ‘Sparkle’, were full of her most flamboyant outfits most featuring feathers or fur!! The most striking piece though had to be the colourful kimono patterned with cranes designed by Alexander McQueen, while he was designing for Givenchy.

From top left: boots by Alexander McQueen, red suede shoes by Nina Ricci, shoes by McQueen, and boots by McQueen

As well as gorgeous couture gowns, Chanel suits that I lusted over, there was an amazing array of shoes that I am sure Lady Gaga would love to own and wear. These beauties were all changed behind glass but it was easy to see what attracted Daphne Guinness to them, they are all exquisite in design. My favourite has to be the black leaf moulded shoes by McQueen.

Want to see more but you don’t think you’ll be stopping by New York before it finishes on January 7, 2012? Well I have found this video on Youtube that takes you round the whole exhibit.


**Unfortunately I needed to get pre-press approval to take my own snaps, which of course I didn’t do as I wasn’t sure I would have time, but hey I have borrowed these beauties from the Museum at FIT.**
[Pics: Museum at FIT]

Hotel Review: My Love For The Soho Grand Hotel

I have stayed in fancy hotels before but none quite as special as the Soho Grand Hotel in New York. Not only is this a very cool hotel, the location is perfection right in the heart of Soho, just round the corner from Canal Street subway which means you can get anywhere, but it was the exquisite decor that knocked me out, I loved the luxurious fabrics mix in with the industrial touches, everything about this hotel from the very helpful staff to the fashionable crowd makes it a great base to take in New York.

I am not joking when I say that the Soho Grand Hotel attracts the fashion elite, the concierge was telling me that the hotel was buzzing during New York Fashion Week where a number of designers held presentations, parties and stayed. They are also hosting the British Fashion Council when they come to New York in November with their London Show Rooms. The hotel also attracts a few rocks bands, apparently one was staying while I was there I didn’t recognise them and I didn’t catch their name *bad groupie*, even Britney Spears and Jessica Simpson frequently stay over, and the barman was also telling me Alan Cummings held his Halloween party here last year and it was “off the hook”!!!

Seriously this Downtown hotel seems to attract a very hip crowd, while I was getting a bite in the lounge area a lot of fashionable folk whizzed through for meetings, lunch and a general catch-up, a great place to people watch.

I loved the lounge area, filled with comfie sofas and leather armchairs, and decorated beautifully with birdcages filled with Christian Louboutin shoes and shoe boxes. It took me three times seating in this area to realise that they were actual Louboutin red soles!

On the first night, which so happen to be the last day of summer, we all chilled out down in The Yard nibbled on french fries and I had the most amazing Pimms cocktail. My pictures are all poor, I blame poor light, tiredness after the flight, oh and the alcohol!!

I have to admit now I didn’t actually spend a lot of time in the hotel, hence no pics of the gym, or much of the inside other than my room, I didn’t even get a spare moment to find the pantry, which is on ever floor to get a tea or coffee. But what I did see I loved it was such a cool place to relax in after a long day and my room was perfection, even if I was a little scared of falling out of my huge bed!!

My view wasn’t the best, I over looked some office block, but the other girls got views of the Empire State building, so if you stay here request a higher floor as they offer the best window glazing opportunities my sixth floor room not so much.

What I did love about my room was the bathroom, if you felt the tweetie bird was something new think again, it seems that Saul Steinberg, a cartoonist for The New Yorker in the 1950s had the idea first. His designs were on the wallpaper and shower curtain and I am going to get my picture blown up for my bathroom as I love it so much.

I even got a rubber duck, LOVE!!!

I have spoken about my love of bathroom goodies before, well the Soho Grand have the best from the amazing Malin + Goetz – I adored my rum shampoo and body wash, and I have to admit I sneakily brought my set home with me.

The Soho Grand also has one of the quirkiest mini bars I have ever seen, I seriously was worried I would get the munchies and need these gummy bears.

I have to give it to the Soho Grand I haven’t raved about a hotel so much in a long time. I loved my short trip to New York and in-part that was because the hotel was so amazing. There is so much more to this hotel that I didn’t get to explore, like you can have a complimentary goldfish to look after during your stay, I would have loved the time to take the bikes out, or even enjoy a beauty treat at the Privé Salon maybe I can do that on my next visit.

One last thing that more hotels should take note of, the Soho Grand offers free wi-fi throughout, which for me is a must as I use my smartphone all the time, and generally my laptop is near by.

NYC Adventure: HTC Inspiration Tour – Part 3 – Charlotte Ronson

The fifth and final host on the HTC Inspiration Tour was the very down-to-earth and quite poorly fashion designer Charlotte Ronson. Such a trooper though as she just wrapped up warm in her own designed parka jacket from her spring/summer 2011 collection, as she sat waiting for each group to come by on the High Line. Not only did I love her parka, yes I am someone who loved the 90s, I also love how she couldn’t go without a little glamour, working her own black laced ankle booties from her Resort 2011 collection.

Grundy vs pretty is a great look – LOVE!!

Charlotte was sweet in talking about how her musical family, if you didn’t know she is the sister of Mark and Samantha Ronson, inspires her work she even went onto tell us that Samantha created a mixtape that inspired one of her collections. It was also interesting getting insight into how she juggles her main line collection that just showcased spring/summer 2012 during New York Fashion Week, as well as her on-going collaborations with JCPenney, a new beauty line that just recently launch into Sephoria and her expansion into Asia.

I have to admit I wish I had more time with her, would have been interesting to know more about the celebrity influences on her collection, not only from her own fame but also how much it helps a brand like hers when famous pals include Kelly Osbourne and Nicole Richie wear her designs.

It was nice to hear her inspirations for her spring/summer 2012 collection, which she described as more “lady like” than previous collections with a lots of Victorian influences in the detailing such as covered fabric buttons and lace, which contrasted nicely with the seventies bohemian vibe of crop tops, patchwork denim and “cute florals”. When talking about her collection she was so passionate it was inspiring to hear, I think some have the feeling that she works off her ‘Ronson’ name but I think that couldn’t be further away from the truth. From just a short meeting it is obvious that Charlotte is driven and works very hard on her line.

I did ask whether we would ever see her show during London Fashion Week, and it doesn’t look like it would happen as New York is very much her base. It would be nice to get the brand more recognition here in the UK, especially as she doesn’t have a press team here, but Charlotte didn’t say no to one day doing something here. Maybe one day I will be able to attend her show at NYFW.

As well as having a great chat Charlotte also gave us all a copy of her Spring ’12 runway mix created for her by Samantha Ronson. I love it so much especially track 7 –  Rolling in the Fire by Adele/John Legend a special S.Ronson mix. Very cool keepsake from such a fabulous day.

It was also great to see Charlotte feeling a little better and all glammed up at the HTC Rhyme launch party. She looked stunning in her black three-quarter sleeve lace vintage dress, teamed with coral strappy heels. I just love how she is still rocking the same very cool, uber-unstyled bun in her hair and friendship bracelets.

NYC Adventure: HTC Inspiration Tour – Part 2

I loved meeting the chef, the artist and the mobile phone designer, but I was so pleased that the HTC Inspiration Tour also featured a fashion element. The fourth stop on the tour was inside the swanky The Standard Hotel’s The Living Room bar to meet with jewellery designer Samantha House.

This was a perfect setting to meet Samantha, as the bar has a lounge-cum-surf shack feel about it, and Samantha in her bra-flashing wrap dress and cute girlie vibe is kind of a free-spirit of contradictions herself. I was really taken with the décor of floating lights and plants down the windows, and a surf board signed by Kelly Slater, as well as the fantastic looking cocktails.

I have to admit out of all the hosts I was completely mesmerised by Samantha, her confidence and attitude was amazing, and it was one of those meetings that I wish I had recorded rather than just took pictures. Not only are her designs stunning, she also has an amazing perspective on people and New York that was fascinating to hear, especially when it comes to how NYC can change peoples style.

Both Samantha and Hip Guide Syl were wearing her designs and they were spectacular. Working a lot with brightly coloured and luxurious polished stones and beads, Samantha also adds textures to her designs with wire and rope, each piece is handmade and very couture-like. I love that Samantha simply described her line as “pretty”. It is certainly more than that, the designs are exquisite and it is rare to find something that is luxurious while still being fun.

The lovely Aparna modelling one of Samantha’s designs, which we were lucky to receive as a special gift from HTC at the end of the scavenger hunt as our prize. The piece is called the Angelina, and Samantha said that the wire design represent the avenues of Manhattan and the clear beads the sparkle of the city, and I quite agree. Such a gorgeous piece that you imagine it weighs a ton, but it is so light that it makes it easy to wear. One of the girls wore it to the party in the evening and it looked fab under the disco lights.

One of the things that always inspires me is finding new brands to adore and obsess over, and I think that after meeting Samantha I will definitely have to keep an eye out for her new collections, I really do appreciate a crazy creative!!!

As well as meeting an amazing designer I was also taken back by the enormous sculpture standing guard in front of the hotel designed by KAWS.

Want to know more about the HTC Inspiration Tour click for Part 1 here, or visit my Facebook for more pictures.